If you have a fire or water emergency, please call us now at (607) 846-3685

To have the optimal experience while using this site, you will need to update your browser. You may want to try one of the following alternatives:

Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Archived Blog Posts

Are You Ready for an Emergency?

4/1/2019 (Permalink)

Commercial Are You Ready for an Emergency? Emergency Ready Profile

As a business owner you always want to make sure you have emergency contacts close by in case anything unexpected happens. We couldn't imagine the amount of stress! SERVPRO® of Chemung & Schuyler Counties realizes that you might not think about the unexpected things that might happen to your business; flooding, tornado damage, etc.

Emergency Ready Program

Our ERP, Emergency Ready Profile is the best way to reduce business interruption following a disaster, plan for it now! As many as 50% of businesses may never recover following a disaster, according to the latest industry research. Of the businesses that survive, the overwhelming majority of them had a preparedness plan in place. Pre-planning can serve as an insurance policy aimed at peace of mind. By developing a SERVPRO® Emergency READY Profile for your business, you minimize business interruption by having an immediate plan of action. Knowing what to do and what to expect in advance is the key to timely mitigation and can help minimize how water and fire damage can affect your business.


The SERVPRO® Emergency READY Profile Advantage is of no-cost assessment to your facility. This means there is no need to allocate funds, giving you a great value at no cost. A concise Profile Document that contains only the critical information needed in the event of an emergency. – It will only take a little time to complete and will not take you away from current projects. But it will save a lot of time if ever needed. A guide to help you get back into your building following a disaster.

This can help minimize the amount of time your business is inactive by having an immediate plan of action. Establishes SERVPRO® of Chemung & Schuyler Counties as your disaster mitigation and restoration provider.

You have a provider that is recognized as an industry leader and close by. Identification of the line of command for authorizing work to begin.

This saves time so we can begin the work of mitigating the damage which can save you time and money. Provides facility details such as shut-off valve locations, priority areas and priority contact information.

Having a quick reference of what to do, how to do it and who to call provides solutions in advance of an emergency so that during the emergency you are “Ready for whatever happens.” Give us a call today and set up your ERP!

Basement Water Damage

3/29/2019 (Permalink)

A basement can flood at any time, although flooding most often occurs during heavy rainfall. Basements are inherently prone to flooding because they are the lowest level of a building and are normally built partly or entirely below ground level. There are a number of reasons why your Chemung or Schuyler County basement could flood, including: 

  • A blocked or failed sewer lateral pipe
  • Heavy rain causes surface water to pool around your home
  • Storm sewer backup
  • Sanitary sewer backup
  • Foundation drainage failure
  • Water supply-line break or hot-water tank failure
  • And many more

Have Questions about Basement Flooding?

Call Today - 607-846-3685

If flood water is not handled quickly and properly, it can jeopardize your health and safety, and cause severe damage to your home’s structure. Remember, the longer you wait, the worse the problem will get.

The bottom line: a flooded basement can jeopardize your health, safety, and your home’s integrity. It’s worth making a call to SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties and let our trained, professional crews handle the situation safely and correctly. We have earned the trust of hundreds of homeowners, business owners, and property professionals.

We are Flooded Basement Specialists:

  • We are Available 24 hours/7 days per week
  • We’re a Preferred Vendor to many National Insurance Companies
  • We Bill The Insurance Directly – One Less Thing For You To Worry About
  • Our Technicians are Highly-Trained  in Water Restoration Techniques
  • We use s500 IICRC Restoration Standards
  • Advanced Inspection and Extraction Equipment

Top 5 Most Common Causes of House Fires

3/28/2019 (Permalink)

Here are the top 5 most common causes of house fires as identified by the National Fire Protection Association.

  1. Candles

From 2007-2011, the NFPA says there was an average of 10,630 fires in the U.S. that were started by candles, causing 115 deaths, 903 injuries and approximately $418 million in property damage. That is an average of 29 candle fires per day.

Safety tips:

  • Never leave a candle burning near flammable items.
  • Never leave a candle burning in a child’s room or an unoccupied room.
  • Make sure candles fit securing into candle holders so they won’t tip over.
  • Blow out any candles before leaving a room or going to sleep
  1. Smoking

While the number of fires caused by smoking is trending downward, the NFPA found that there was still an average of 17,600 related fires per year resulting in 490 deaths and more than $516 million in property damage.

Safety tips:

  • If you smoke, consider smoking outside.
  • Use wide, sturdy ashtrays to catch butts and ashes.
  • Look for cigarette butts under furniture and between seat cushions to make sure no lit butts have fallen someplace where they can’t be seen.
  • Don’t smoke in bed, when you’re tired or around medical oxygen.
  1. Electrical & Lighting

According to the NFPA, in 2011 approximately 47,700 home structure fires were caused by some sort of electrical failure or malfunction. These resulted in 418 deaths, 1,570 injuries and $1.4 billion in property damage.

Safety tips:

  • Don’t overload outlets or electrical cords.
  • Make sure you have the right cord for the job – inside cords for inside, heavy duty/outside cords for outdoor use.
  • Don’t leave Christmas lights, Christmas trees, or halogen lights on overnight or when not at home.
  • Consider having an electrician perform an annual checkup of your home’s wiring.
  1. Dryers & Washing Machines

Clothes dryer fires happen more often than one might think, accounting for 16,800 home structure fires in 2010 and doing more than $236 million in property damage. 

Safety tips:

  • Clean the lint screen frequently and don’t run the dryer without it.
  • For gas and propane dryers, make sure there aren’t any leaks in the lines.
  • Vent the dryer to the outside of the house and ensure nothing blocks the vent pipe.
  • Clean the vent pipe and the area where the screen is housed.
  • Keep the area around the dryer free of combustible materials.
  1. Lightning

From 2007-2011, NFPA says there was an average of 22,600 fires per year caused by lightning strikes.

Safety tips:

  • Stay away from doors and windows during an electrical storm.
  • Do not use corded phones, computers, TVs or other electrical equipment during storms.
  • Unplug major electronics – TVs, stereo equipment, computers, and microwaves to minimize damage if there is a lightning strike close by.
  • Avoid plumbing such as sinks, baths, and faucets during a thunderstorm.

You experience a fire in your home, don't hesitate to call SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Pet Safety In An Emergency

3/27/2019 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Pet Safety In An Emergency SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties 607-846-3685

Emergencies come in many forms:  fires, hurricanes, earthquakes, tornadoes, floods, and violent storms.  In the event of a natural disaster or extreme weather, would you know what to do to protect your pet, to keep them safe?

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention suggests five (5) steps you can take to keep your pets safe during and after an emergency.

  1. Have a plan- what you would do if you aren't home or can't get to your pet when disaster strikes
  2. Make a kit- stock up on food and water, tap water could become contaminated
  3. In Case of Emergency- have information with you that will help find your pet in case they get lost or run away
  4. Make sure vaccinations are up to date- in case your pet needs to stay at a shelter
  5. Have a safe haven- Pets get nervous too, make sure you have their favorite toys, a leash, and a bed or cage

The CDCP gives some Other things to think about and other resources with information to help keep your pets safe in an emergency.

Steps to Clean Up After a Major Renovation

3/26/2019 (Permalink)

Clean-up Steps

Usually, a post-construction clean up will include the following:

-sweep and vacuum all surfaces, including ceilings, walls

-sweep, mop, and disinfect floors

-vacuum all upholstery

-wipe down doors, knobs, baseboards, moldings, and hardware

-thorough wipe-down and sanitation of bathrooms and kitchens (including appliances, cabinets, and counters)

-dust, vacuum, and wipe-down of all window interiors including sills and frames

-dust all ducts, grates, vents, blinds, ceiling fans, and lighting fixtures

-clean all hardware such as hinges and handles

-clean inside and outside of shelves and cabinets

-clean inside all closets

-removal of all remaining trash and debris (although your contractor should have removed most of this as part of the contract)

If you're trying to decide whether or not to do it yourself or to outsource it to the experts, ask the following questions:

-Do you have the energy and time?

-How long will it take you?

-Do you have any money left in the renovation budget you could put toward the clean? (Or better yet, build it in now if you haven't started!).

Different circumstances will determine who gets the job, but a thorough clean is crucial. All kinds of particles are released into the air during renovations, including various toxins, mold spores, silicates, and ultra-fine dust that can damage your lungs. Freshly applied paints, lacquers, and primers also give off fumes. Given the possible dangers to your health, the hefty price tag for a proper clean may be well worth it!

Pre-Planning Helps Minimize Business Interruptions

3/26/2019 (Permalink)

Commercial Pre-Planning Helps Minimize Business Interruptions Don't Be a Statistic, Call SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Pre-planning for an emergency can serve as an insurance policy aimed at peace of mind. Just knowing that you are "Ready for whatever happens" speaks trust to your clients and employees that in the event your business is affected by a disaster, they don’t necessarily have to be.

The SERVPRO® Emergency Ready Profile is a web-based interface design.  Our app is a no-cost readiness plan that places your ready plan data on your mobile device for quick access during an emergency.  Download the Free App

By developing a SERVPRO Emergency READY Profile for your business, you help minimize business interruption by having an immediate plan of action. Knowing what to do and what to expect in advance is the key to timely mitigation and can help minimize how water and fire damage can affect your business.

  • A no-cost assessment of your facility.
    This means there is no need to allocate funds, giving you a great value at no cost.
     
  • A concise Profile Document that contains only the critical information needed in the event of an emergency.
    It will only take a little time to complete and will not take you away from current projects. But it will save a lot of time if ever needed.
     
  • A guide to help you get back into your building following a disaster.
    This can help minimize the amount of time your business is inactive by having an immediate plan of action.
     
  • Establishes your local SERVPRO Franchise Professional as your disaster mitigation and restoration provider.
    You have a provider that is recognized as an industry leader and close by.

  • Identification of the line of command for authorizing work to begin.
    This saves time, so we can begin the work of mitigating the damage which can save you time and money.
     
  • Provides facility details such as shut-off valve locations, priority areas, and priority contact information.
    Having a quick reference of what to do, how to do it and who to call provides solutions in advance of an emergency so that during the emergency you are "Ready for whatever happens."

Is Your Washing Machine Leaking?

3/25/2019 (Permalink)

Water Damage Is Your Washing Machine Leaking? Don't let your washing machine cause water damage in your home.

  • Replace water supply hoses- Water supply hoses can become brittle and burst. Check them periodically and replace your old hoses with a new hose that consists of flexible plastic tubing encased in a stainless steel braided exterior. Purchase an auto-shut off hose protector that protects against catastrophic water damage by automatically shutting off. If excess water flow is sensed the water supply to the washing machine will turn off. 
  • Get a washer floor tray- Replace or repair your leaking washing machine right away to protect against future leaks, slide a water-catching tray under your washing machine to catch drips and leaks. It's an inexpensive way to prevent water damage to your floor from a leaking washing machine.
  • Purchase a single-lever shut off valve- Turn the water off after each load of wash. Replace your dual faucets with a single lever which controls both hot and cold water simultaneously. 
  • Floor protection device- An automatic water leak detection device prevents flooding by immediately shitting off both the hot and cold water supply to that washing machine when sensors detect a water leak. These devices are quick and easy to install by homeowners and provide 24/7 protection against water damage caused by washing machine floods. Some flood protection devices sound an audible alarm.
  • Automatic Washing Machine Water Shutoff Valve and Leak Sensor- The shutoff valve protects against catastrophic water damage. It allows water to flow when it senses that the washing machine is turned on, and stops water from flowing if the machine is turned off. It also stops water from flowing if it senses excessive water flow or detects a leak. 

What Should You Do After a Fire?

3/22/2019 (Permalink)

Fire Damage What Should You Do After a Fire? Call the Professionals!

What to Expect After a Fire

Fire and smoke damage is destructive and finding a restoration/mitigation company can be daunting. When it comes to fire and smoke restoration, SERVPRO professionals are trained to follow an extensive and thorough restoration process in order to get your home or business back to normal.  

Each fire/smoke damage case is unique and is treated as such by SERVPRO professionals. We will compose a detailed plan to rid your property of smoke and soot damage. Smoke odor latches onto and penetrates the surfaces of walls, ceilings, clothes, upholstered furniture, books, electronics and more. It is crucial that all affected contents and surfaces are properly sanitized by professionals. Oftentimes it can be difficult to determine the source of the smoke odor. Experienced professionals know here to look for smoke and soot damage and how to best approach the restoration process. 

If smoke damage is not taken care of by a professional, your property and its inhabitants may face greater damage. Smoke and soot can destroy the integrity of your home or business damaging the ventilation system, air ducts, insulation, wall studs, and even the framing/structure.

Different Smoke Odors

Cleaning smoke and soot damage yourself or using basic cleaning service runs the risk of recurring smoke odor which can cause respiratory problems. Smoke odor can be harmful depending on what type of material was burned. Smoke that comes from wood framing causes a "campfire" smell which lets off acetic acid, benzene, carbon monoxide (CO), formaldehyde, formic acid, heavy metals, nitrogen-oxides (NO20, phenols, sulfur dioxide (SO2).

Cooking fire smoke is very difficult to remove and has a lingering smell of burnt animal fat/protein. Grease splatter from a cooking fire requires specific cleaning techniques that only a professional can provide.

When plastic is burned, it releases dangerous chemicals such as hydrochloric acid, sulfur dioxide, dioxins, furans, and heavy metals, as well as particulates and are known to cause respiratory ailments which are potentially carcinogenic.

Fireplace wood fires also emit hazardous emissions, such as particulates, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), and other emissions that can be dangerous for health. 

Prevent Water Damage Before It Happens

3/21/2019 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO Prevent Water Damage Before It Happens Prevent Water Damage

1. Be careful where you plant

Some plants and trees, like weeping willows, have pretty invasive roots. If you are not careful, they'll grow right into your sprinkler system, drainage field, pipes, and septic tanks. Plan before you plant, keep roots away from any water lines.

2. Clean out roof gutters

You know it's on your to-do list anyway, so if you can, take a safe climb up to your roof next Sunday and check out your gutters. If you're seeing lots of leaves, birds nests, sticks, and whatnot up there, your gutters may not be doing the job you hired them for. And on a rainy day, a clogged gutter can send water spilling into your home's foundation, through the roof, or down to your basement. That could cause some serious water damage! So next time you're doing some seasonal cleaning, make sure those gutters are clean. And if your gutters are too high, be safe and get a professional to clean them.

3. Keep an eye on your water bill

With so many water pipes behind walls and in the floors in your house, you might not know there's a leak until the damage is done. That's why it's a good idea to keep a close eye on your monthly water bill. If you see it starting to creep up or get one that's uncommonly high, it's a pretty good sign that you may have a leak somewhere. 

4. Use a drain snake instead of unclogging chemicals

No matter how crazy clean you are, from your shower to your kitchen sink, clogs are going to happen. And chances are at some point in your life you've used one of those powerful chemical drain cleaners to get things moving again. But as convenient as they may be, most people don't realize those caustic chemicals are also eating away at their pipes (and they might not be too good for you either). If you rely on them a lot, you could be setting yourself up for leaks. That's why owning a drain snake is a good solution to clear away clogs. They're pretty inexpensive, you can get them at your local hardware store, and they can cut through most any clog you'll have without damaging pipes or making your eyes red and teary. 

5. Never pour grease down your sink

You've probably heard this before, but you should definitely avoid pouring grease down your kitchen sink. It doesn't matter if you flush it with hot or cold water. It can still congeal and cling to your pipes, and could still cause some serious damage and blockage.

Statistics Restaurant Owners Should Know

3/19/2019 (Permalink)

Commercial Statistics Restaurant Owners Should Know Commercial Kitchen

Cooking up Commercial Kitchen Fire Safety:

Statistics Restaurant Owners Should Know

During 2006-2010, an estimated average of 7,640 structure fires in eating and drinking establishments were reported to U.S. fire departments per year, with associated annual losses of :

  • Two civilian deaths
  • 115 civilian injuries
  • $246 million in property damage 

In eating and drinking establishments, direct property damage per fire was 75% lower when a wet pipe sprinkler system was present, compared to fires with no automatic extinguishing equipment present. 

Fires are less common during the overnight hours (from Midnight to 6 a.m.) but cause more property damage.

Structure Fires in Eating and Drinking Establishments by Major Cause (2006-2010)

Fires

  1. Cooking Equipment 57%
  2. Heating Equipment 10%
  3. Electrical/ Lighting Equipment 7%
  4. Smoking Material7%
  5. Intentional 5%

Property Damage

  1. Cooking Equipment 40%
  2. Electrical/Lighting Equipment 13%
  3. Intentional 10%
  4. Heating Equipment 7%
  5. Smoking Material 5%

Total annual property damage for eating and drinking establishments = $246 million

If your commercial kitchen is affected by a fire or in need of a deep clean call SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties at 607-846-3685.

We're Fire and Water Damage Specialists

As fire and water restoration specialists, we have the training, experience and specialized equipment necessary to restore your home or business. We are committed to providing superior service while restoring your property back to pre-fire condition.

  • Fire & Smoke Restoration Technician
  • Odor Control Technician
  • Upholstery & Fabric Cleaning Technician
  • Water Damage Restoration Technician

How To Plan For A Power Outage

3/14/2019 (Permalink)

Storm Damage How To Plan For A Power Outage SERPVRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties 607-846-3685

The American Red Cross suggests that every household have an emergency preparedness kit for your home and for your car. Unfortunately, only a little more than half of the homes in the U.S. have an emergency kit.

Your power outage kit can start with a duffle bag or backpack. Depending on the situation, the kit can be a 3-day supply for an evacuation or a 2-week supply for home. The kit should include at least a gallon of water per person, per day, canned food, a can opener, flashlights, batteries, a first aid kit, personal hygiene items, a multi-purpose tool, and medications, copies of personal documents such as proof of address, deed/lease, passports, birth certificates, and insurance policies. A printed list of emergency phone numbers and of friends and family. The needs of all family members including your pots should be considered when building your emergency kit. Learn more about what you need in a survival kit.

We will continually bring you more tips and information on how to best be prepared in case of disaster. Should you find yourself with a water damage disaster from a broken pipe or from a damaged water tank in your home or business, call SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties 24/7, 365 to help when your emergency strikes. 

Trust In The Professionals

3/14/2019 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO Trust In The Professionals Bleach does not kill mold, it will only kill it on the surface and discolor the mold to make it appear as though it is gone.

We get asking this question many times from customers, "Can I just spray bleach on it?"

Using bleach to take care of mold was once recommended by agencies such as OSHA and the EPA. However, they have since been revised after research revealed that the "do-all, be-all cure" for killing microbial growth, actually had the opposite effect. First, let us take a look at how mold forms to understand why using bleach is not effective. 

Mold needs water, food, and typically a warm temperature to grow. This illustrates the first reason to call SERVPRO: if mold is growing, chances are the materials are wet. There has likely been a water loss of some sort, and until it is properly dried, mold will continue to grow. 

The chlorine in bleach, due to its ionic composition, cannot penetrate porous surfaces. Porous surfaces include materials such as drywall, ceilings, wood, carpet, and many others. Spraying bleach on the mold will only kill it on the surface. Many people don't know that mold actually has roots called hyphae. These roots will still remain in the porous material and eventually rise to the surface again. Remember that bleach contains both chlorine and water. The chlorine cannot make it below the surface-but the water can. Thus, you are actually replenishing the mold with one of the key things it needs to grow-water! Secondly- it will "bleach" the color, making it appear that the mold is gone. Again, this is only on the surface.

At SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties, we use specialized products, designed to travel deep into the porous surfaces to remove mold at its roots. Sometimes we cannot remove the mold from the material and the material must be completely removed from the home for the safety of you and your family. Our technicians are trained to differentiate between what can be safely cleaned and what cannot. In addition, live mold releases spores into the air. The air in your home may need to be treated with specialty equipment to make sure that all spores are removed. 

Preventative Maintenance Tips for Commercial Properties

3/14/2019 (Permalink)

Commercial Preventative Maintenance Tips for Commercial Properties Commercial Preventative Maintenance Tips

It is springtime, but winter conditions may have caused stress to commercial structures. Spring is an important time to make sure certain tasks are completed to prepare for summer and repair any damage caused by extreme cold and wet weather. Proactive maintenance can help prevent damage to a property, saving time and money throughout the year and can also help with insurance claims.  Below are a few items to be examined and cleaned.

Roof and Exterior

Wind, snow, and rain can impact a building’s roof and exterior. Walking the property and being on the lookout for standing water or leaks from roofs and gutters is important. Chipped paint, siding dents, and damage cracked or leaking windows, foundation cracks, roof leaks, and clogged gutters should all be photographed, reported and repaired. If left unresolved, long-term issues can lead to more serious issues including foundation erosion and more.

Landscaping and Irrigation

Harsh winds, rain, and snow can damage plants and limbs, especially on boxwoods, small shrubs and ornamental trees. Mulching, trimming broken limbs, pruning back plants, and cleaning debris needs to be done to prepare for spring growth.  Irrigation systems need to be checked for damage and proper drainage to be ready for the dry summer season.

Mechanical

Warmer temperatures arriving means the facility mechanical systems should be inspected and maintained. Replacement of air filters, flushing of water heaters, and checking carbon monoxide detectors and sprinkler and fire suppression systems should be done before summer arrives.

When Storms or Floods hit Chemung & Schuyler Counties, SERVPRO is ready!

3/13/2019 (Permalink)

Storm Damage When Storms or Floods hit Chemung & Schuyler Counties, SERVPRO is ready! Our highly trained crews are ready to respond 24/7 to storm or flood damage in Chemung & Schuyler Counties

SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties specializes in storm and flood damage restoration. Our crew is highly trained and we use specialized equipment to restore your property to its pre-storm condition.

Faster Response

Since we are locally owned and operated, we are able to respond quicker with the right resources, which is extremely important. A fast response lessens the damage, limits further damage, and reduces restoration cost.

Resources to Hangle Floods and Storms

When storms hit Chemung & Schuyler Counties, we can scale our resources to handle a large storm or flooding disaster. We can access equipment and personnel from a network of 1,650 Franchises across the country and elite Disaster Recovery Teams that are strategically located throughout the United States to assist in large scale natural disasters. 

Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 607-846-3685

Are You Ready for Spring?

3/13/2019 (Permalink)

Winter here in Upstate New York is notoriously brutal. Because of this, we are always itching for Punxsutawney Phil to not see his little shadow on February 2nd so that we can get to Spring faster. The problem is, a faster Spring could mean too much rain too soon, or thawing snow from the mountains can bring severe flooding. Whether in the streets or in your home, the results can be devastating. Floods are the most common and costly natural disaster in the United States. 

Here are some tips to keep in mind as Spring comes closer:

  • Never drive or walk through flooded streets. It only takes six inches of moving water to sweep a person off their feet and 12 inches to move a car.
  • Floods are expensive! A few inches of water in a 1,000 square foot home could cost more than $10,000.
  • Most insurance does not cover flood damage. Only flood insurance will cover the damage from floods. Speak with your insurance agent to learn more and remember flood insurance takes 30 days to take effect, so purchase now to protect your home and your family.
  • Talk with your family and make an emergency plan for you and don't forget your pets! No matter the disaster, it's always a good idea to have emergency supplies ready at home, at work, and in the car.
  • Lastly, if you do find your self with a flooded basement or flood damage to your home, call us! We have crews available 24/7/365. 

HVAC Cleaning benefits by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

1/7/2019 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO HVAC Cleaning benefits by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties Before and After Ducts by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Sneezing like crazy? Coughing uncontrollably? Are your itchy and scratchy?

Maybe the air you’re breathing in your home isn’t as clean as you thought. Believe it or not ventilation systems are often the biggest culprit in poor indoor air quality. But have no fear - the SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties team is here!

If your HVAC system has been running for a while without any attention it could be circulating dust, pollen, odors, dirt, debris and more. If no one in your household suffers from allergies or unexplained symptoms or illnesses and if, after a visual inspection of the inside of the ducts, you see no indication that your air ducts are contaminated with large deposits of dust or mold... having your air ducts cleaned is probably unnecessary. It is normal for the return registers to get dusty as dust-laden air is pulled through the grate. This does not indicate that your air ducts are contaminated with heavy deposits of dust or debris; the registers can be easily vacuumed or removed and cleaned.

On the other hand, if family members are experiencing unusual or unexplained symptoms or illnesses that you think might be related to your home environment, you should discuss the situation with your doctor.

EPA has published the following publications for guidance on identifying possible indoor air quality problems and ways to prevent or fix them.

And if you want the job done and done well, call SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties at 607-846-3685

Belongings Damaged because of Mold by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

1/7/2019 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO Belongings Damaged because of Mold by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties Moldy Books by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

If your home or business has important documents that are affected by mold, we can HELP!

We use a specialized process called Gamma Irradiation. This is used for cleaning/ disinfection and decontaminating documents or other consumer goods. In gamma irradiation, high-energy photons are emitted from an isotope source (Colbalt 60) producing ionization(electron disruptions) throughout a product. In a CAT 3 situation (sewage or flood water), documents are not only deteriorating but are also infected with all types of bacteria. In most storm situations you are dealing with CAT 3 water: therefore, most of the affected documents that you will encounter will be contaminated. If this is the case then decontamination is always a must. In Living cells, these disruptions result in damage to the DNA and other cellular structures. These photon-induced changes at the molecular level cause death to the organism or render the organism incapable of reproduction. The gamma process does not create residuals or impart radioactivity in processed products.

For additional information or questions on processes involving fire, water, or mold damaged documents please call our office, and we would be happy to further discuss and provide a free estimate for services.

Different Type of Smoke from Fire Damage by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

1/7/2019 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Different Type of Smoke from Fire Damage by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Did you know there are different types of smoke? There is “wet” smoke and “dry” smoke. What is burning in your home or business determines the type of smoke residue that is left. The different types of smoke are wet smoke (plastic & rubber), dry smoke (paper & wood), protein fire residue (produced by evaporation of material rather than from a fire), fuel oil soot (furnace puff back), other types of smoke (tear gas, fingerprint powder, and fire extinguisher residue).

Our SERVPRO franchise is highly trained in how clean and remediate fire losses depending on the type of smoke. SERVPRO is also trained in how to assess smoke damage. For example, smoke is unique in its behavior as it gravitates to cooler areas and upper levels, smoke seeps through holes around piping and can go floor to floor between walls and flooring.

Dealing with any smoke or fire damage to your home or business, no matter how minor or severe, can be stressful and frustrating. If you experience a fire loss, and have issues with linger odor, wall discoloration, or even severe damage call in SERVPRO, we will be there to provide a free quote and plan of action to restore your property "Like it never even happened."

Fire Safety & Prevention by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

1/7/2019 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Fire Safety & Prevention by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

We tend to think about Fire Prevention each fall during Fire Prevention Month…. however fire can affect, homes, businesses, and communities at any time. Always keep in mind how to keep your property safest during a fire, especially by having working smoke alarms!

According to the National Fire Protection Association, survey data shows that the public has many misconceptions about smoke alarms, which can put them at increased risk in the event of a home fire.  In an effort to inform the members of our community, SERVPRO and the National Fire Protection Association are offering several tips and information regarding your smoke detectors:

-Check how many years you've had your smoke alarm for- if it's after 10 years its time for a new one.  If you are not sure how old your smoke alarm is, the date of the manufacture on the back of the alarm will tell you.

-Hardwired smoke alarms operate 94% of the time while battery powered alarms operate 80% of the time. However, if smoke alarms completely fail to operate, it could mean batteries are missing, disconnected or dead.

-As the National Fire Protection Association specifically recommend, an ionization smoke alarm is generally more responsive to flaming fires and a photoelectric smoke alarm is generally more responsive to smoldering fires. For the best protection, or where extra time is needed to awaken or assist others, both types of alarms, or combination ionization and photoelectric alarms are recommended.

Keep safe this week and every week. SERVPRO will always be there for you.

Unseen Water Damage by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

1/7/2019 (Permalink)

Water Damage Unseen Water Damage by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Everyone knows that the water damage that you can clearly see is causing damage to your home is not good and should be fixed as quickly as possible. However, do you know that even the smallest water damages have the potential to cause serious structural and indoor air quality issues over time. SERVPRO Professionals have the equipment, training and experience to find and dry unseen water before secondary damages occur. Having the right equipment to use makes a significant difference when dealing with water damage. Here are a few examples of what our team uses to help any unseen water damage in your home:

Moisture Sensors are used to detect moisture in carpets, baseboards and walls.

Moisture Meters are used to determine the actual moisture content of various materials.

The moisture tester provides accurate readings, allowing SERVPRO Professionals to monitor the drying process.

Thermohygrometers measure temperature and relative humidity. When armed with this information, SERVPRO Professionals can calculate and create an environment most conducive to drying. When facing a contaminated water loss, it is not only important to dry the structure, but the structure must also be disinfected and often deodorized.

Ultra Low-Volume (ULV) Foggers will atomize liquid deodorizing agents, producing a fine mist that can easily penetrate the site where odor-causing residues may accumulate. This device can also be used to inject fungicides and disinfectants into wall cavities and other hard-to-reach areas. Thermal Foggers dispense solvent-based products by creating a dense fog. The fog consists of tiny particles of deodorant solution that attach to and neutralize odor-causing particles.

If you are having any problems dealing with water in your home or property, call SERVPRO immediately so that we can help you make it “Like it never even happened.”

Best Practices to Avoid Winter Pipe Freezes by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties!

1/7/2019 (Permalink)

Water Damage Best Practices to Avoid Winter Pipe Freezes by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties! SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties!

Many people welcome the crisp, cold winter weather, but nobody welcomes pipe-related headaches that come with the dropping temperatures. Frozen pipes are far more common than most would think, affecting hundreds of thousands of families every winter. 

The best way to handle pipe freezes are to prevent them in the first place.

Follow these SERVPRO Tips:

Spend a little, Save a lot:

Temperatures only need to be at 31 degrees for your pipes to freeze and cause you a headache

Even if your house is 45 degrees, waterlines close to exterior walls (I.E. baseboard heaters) can be significantly colder because of their proximity to an uninsulated exterior wall, your house may be 45 degrees, but your pipes may be dangerously close to freezing

Spend the extra few dollars in fuel, and save yourself a lot of time and frustration in the long run

Let your pipes feel the heat:

Be sure to keep your pipes insulated to ensure warmth

Open cabinet doors to allow uninsulated pipes under sinks and appliances close to exterior doors, allowing the heat from your house to heat your pipes

Keep it moving:

Keeping a faucet open to allow a continuous drip ensures that the water in your pipes are moving and decreases the chance of a freeze significantly.

In the event that you ever find yourself on the wrong end of a pipe-related problem, the SERVPRO team would be happy to lend a helping hand!

Commercial Rental Properties by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

3/14/2018 (Permalink)

Do you own rental property? Have your previous tenants left an unsightly mess after they have moved out? Perhaps they left a large amount of garbage and debris, dirty floors and walls or left a strong smelling odor that would make it impossible to rent again as is.That can be an overwhelming experience! But don’t worry, we’re here to help get your rental property clean, fresh smelling and ready for the next tenants to move in.

Give SERVPRO a call and we’ll send out an estimator that will thoroughly explain the type of cleaning needed and how we would get your rental property cleaned and sanitized. Our estimators have seen all sorts of damage caused by previous tenants and have a good understanding of what chemicals and cleaning techniques would be needed. They also can estimate the time needed to perform the necessary tasks. This will provide you with an estimated cost and timeline for the cleaning project.

We’ll then schedule a crew to complete the cleaning for you.

Some of the tasks our technicians could do for you to get your rental property ready to rent again:
Clean floors, ceilings and walls
Clean carpeting and upholstery 
Thermal fogging- to remove any unwanted odors 
Duct cleaning
Debris removal 
Cleaning kitchens and bathrooms

If you should find any other tasks not listed, please feel free to call our office and check with any other things you may come across that may need cleaning.

Covering up Mold by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

3/14/2018 (Permalink)

Over the years, we have talked to many home and business owners about mold. We have talked to people who have tried to get rid of the mold on their own and then decided that they need our help. You should know, we’re here for you! We’re here to answer your questions and remove the mold from your home safely and effectively.

We have talked to home owners who have sprayed mold, scrubbed the surface mold, painted over it with paint or Kilz. All of these techniques have ended with the same story, “the mold came back”.

The mold comes back because in these circumstances, your simply covering up the mold or removing what can be seen on the surface. These methods are not actually removing the mold completely from the materials where the mold has invaded.

Materials in your home that mold grows on can be very porous, therefore, even though you cant’t see if anymore doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist under the surface. Likewise, painting over the mold or spraying the mold covers it up for a limited time before the mold continues to grow and penetrates the new surface. Completely removing the mold will remove potential toxins from spreading and affecting the air you breathe.

When SERVPRO gets a call to remediate mold, we ensure that the job is done properly. We start out by containing the area where the mold exists. We HEPA vacuum all areas around where the mold exists. The HEPA vacuum is able to trap the smallest particles of mold. Following this step, we would continue with remediation specific to the affected materials where the mold exists. The whole time that remediation is occurring we run air scrubbers to continue to filter the spores out of the air.

Facts About Mold by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

3/14/2018 (Permalink)

When you have a water damage in your home, if not properly mitigated, you are at risk of mold becoming a problem. Today, I'm going to tell you some facts about mold:

  • Mold is a type of fungus.
    • One of the most common type of mold is known as mildew.
    • There are hundreds of different types of mold.
  • Mold can live indoors or outdoors and grows best in damp, warm, and humid environments.
  • Even though bathrooms and basements are typically moist areas prone to the growth of molds, any moist area in the household may harbor mold.
    • Having a properly installed fan in the bathroom can help reduce the moist content in the room. 
    • Running a dehumidifier in your basement, especially during the humid months, can help prevent mold from growing.
  • Some people experience allergic reactions or have negative health side effects when exposed to mold. The likely hood of this depends on the type of mold growing and the person.
  • Controlling the moisture content in your home is the best way to prevent mold.
  • Mold is not always able to be seen by the human eye.
    • This is why we highly recommend having mold testing completed by an industrial hygienist.

Mold by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

3/13/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation Mold by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Water damage in your home or office? You could be at risk for mold growth - this topic is actually a lot more complex than you might think. So let the SERVPRO Professionals break it down a bit. 

"Governor Andrew Cuomo signed NYS Senate Bill S3667D-2013 which will create Article 32 to the Labor Law. This article will establish the licensing of mold inspection, assessment, and remediation specialists and minimum work standards."

Now that this law is in effect - mold remediation specialists are required to have much more certification on their ends. The specifics about requirements to become a licensed assessor or remediator have been left to New York State Department Of Labor. But for homeowners, all you need to know is that any contractor that performs mold remediation/abatement services must be certified.

When should you hire a mold remediation company?

  • New York State has set fourth a guideline that whenever 10 sq ft or more of mold is found you should consult a mold remediation specialist.

Need a few more tips?

  • Request proof of pollution insurance
  • Request proof of workers compensation and liability insurance
  • Request employee and company certification.
  • Obtain a written contract for all work to be done and costs to be incurred.

Or you could just call SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties because our employees are certified mold remediators and stay up to date on all certifications and requirements set forth by New York State. Our team will continue to advance in mold remediation techniques as the industry advances each year.

Mold is a serious threat to home and office owners, so having professionals who know how to handle the job is crucial. We're just down the road. Give us a call at 607-846-3685. 

Watch out for fire starters by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

12/28/2017 (Permalink)

Thousands of deaths are caused by fires, burns and other fire-related injuries every year, and 12% of home candle fires occur in December, the National Fire Protection Association reports. Increased use of candles and fireplaces, combined with an increase in the amount of combustible, seasonal decorations present in many homes means more risk for fire.

  • Never leave burning candles unattended or sleep in a room with a lit candle
  • Keep candles out of reach of children
  • Make sure candles are on stable surfaces
  • Don't burn candles near trees, curtains or any other flammable items
  • Don't burn trees, wreaths or wrapping paper in the fireplace
  • Check and clean the chimney and fireplace area at least once a year

If you find yourself needing the services of SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties, please call at 607-846-3685. 

Merry Christmas from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

12/20/2017 (Permalink)

Community Merry Christmas from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties!

SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties wants to wish all of you a very safe and Merry Christmas! 

Getting a Firm Quote by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler

12/15/2017 (Permalink)

Getting a Firm Quote

The reality is that not all firms providing fire damage restoration services provide the same pricing scheme for its residential and commercial fire damage remediation services. Because of this reality, you need to make certain that you obtain a thorough estimate or fee quote from a commercial fire damage remediation service.

Although time is of the essence in the aftermath of a residential or commercial fire, if you can, you should attempt to do at least some price comparisons. You cannot sacrifice the need for immediate intervention at the premises, including prompt board up and fire cleanup, in order to spend an inordinate amount of time shopping for the lowest price. Keep in mind that the lowest price for fire damage remediation services typically is not the best deal. You want to seek out the more reputable, effective fire damage restoration professional at the most reasonable price.

Inquire About Equipment

Not only will you want to glean information about the team of specialists at a fire damage remediation firm, you will also want to inquire about the equipment a company uses. For example, you will want to find out what equipment a company uses to deal with issues like fire cleanup more generally, but also to address smoke damage, soot damage, and smoke smell.

Visit SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties for more information about our services.

When Unexpected Storm Damage Ruins Your Home by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

12/13/2017 (Permalink)

Storm Damage When Unexpected Storm Damage Ruins Your Home by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Here in upstate NY, we often receive severe weather. If mother nature wreaks havoc on your property, use these 7 tips for cleaning up after a storm.

1. Get Protective Clothing. Prior to going inside your home, it is imperative that you wear protective boots, clothing, gloves, eye protection, and a mask. Flood waters carry sewage, bacteria and chemical compounds that may be dangerous.

2. Document the Damage.  To help with insurance and FEMA claims, you really need to document the damage as soon as it's safe to do so. Take photos and videos of your entire home from each and every angle. Make sure to get exterior and interior photos!

3. Water Extraction.  This, you may need help with. Flood water contains potentially dangerous bacteria, rodents, and insects. It's recommended that you have water extraction handled by a locally owned and operated professional disaster response team.

4. Open Windows. Circulating fresh air is an important step for cleaning up after flood damage and preventing mold growth. 

5. Remove Personal Items. Furniture, clothing, and other items in the house can be removed to speed the drying. Prior to throwing away damaged items, take photographs, and have them evaluated to see if they can be cleaned and restored. 

6. Remove Carpeting, Wet Drywall, and Insulation. If the storm water contains sewage, which many floods do, the flooring in the home will probably have to be removed. Drywall and insulation that has been touched by flood waters and saturated will also have to be removed. This helps prevent future mold growth.

7. Scrub Every Surface.  Each and every surface should be scrubbed with a powerful disinfectant.

Your local SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties is available 24x7 and stands at the ready to inspect, extract water, disinfect, dehumidify, and restore your home quickly.

This list might seem overwhelming, and it is. Cleaning up and restoring your home after a storm or water damage in New York requires hard work, proper tools, and specialized equipment.

SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties is locally owned and operated, and we'll work directly with your insurance company for a stress-free claim. Call us 24/7 at (607) 846-3685.

We Specialize in Flooded Basement Cleanup and Restoration by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

12/12/2017 (Permalink)

Water Damage We Specialize in Flooded Basement Cleanup and Restoration by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

A basement can flood at any time, although flooding most often occurs during heavy rainfall. Basements are inherently prone to flooding because they are the lowest level of a building and are normally built partly or entirely below ground level. There are a number of reasons why your basement could flood, including: 

  • A blocked or failed sewer lateral pipe
  • Heavy rain causes surface water to pool around your home
  • Storm sewer backup
  • Sanitary sewer backup
  • Foundation drainage failure
  • Water supply-line break or hot-water tank failure
  • And many more

Have Questions about Basement Flooding?

Call Today: 607-846-3685

If flood water is not handled quickly and properly, it can jeopardize your health and safety, and cause severe damage to your home’s structure. Remember, the longer you wait, the worse the problem will get.

The bottom line: a flooded basement can jeopardize your health, safety, and your home’s integrity. It’s worth making a call to SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties and let our trained, professional crews handle the situation safely and correctly. We have earned the trust of hundreds of homeowners, business owners, and property professionals.

We are Flooded Basement Specialists:

  • We are Available 24 hours/7 days per week
  • We’re a Preferred Vendor to many National Insurance Companies
  • We Bill The Insurance Directly – One Less Thing For You To Worry About
  • Our Technicians are Highly-Trained  in Water Restoration Techniques
  • We use s500 IICRC Restoration Standards
  • Advanced Inspection and Extraction Equipment

Basement Flooded? Call Us Today – We’re Ready To Help (607) 846-3685

Are you prepared for Santa by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

12/11/2017 (Permalink)

As we start December and get excited because the holidays are upon us, we must also keep in mind the importance of safety. Here are some tips to remember during the holidays.

Never use lighted candles near trees, boughs, curtains/drapes, or with any potentially flammable item.

Stand your tree away from fireplaces, radiators and other heat sources. Make sure the tree does not block foot traffic or doorways.

If you use an artificial tree, choose one that is tested and labeled as fire resistant. Artificial trees with built-in electrical systems should have the Underwriters Laboratory (UL) label.

If using a natural tree, make sure it is well watered to avoid dry branches from catching fire from the heat of light bulbs.

Turn off all lights on trees and decorations when you go to bed or leave the house. Unplug extension cords when not in use.

When putting up holiday decorations, always use the proper step stool or ladder to reach high places. Don’t stand on chairs, desks or other furniture.

Prepare your car for the winter by checking items such as the brakes, spark plugs, battery, and tires. Check your owner’s manual for the recommended interval for a tune-up.

Visit http://www.SERVPRObethesdapotomacmd.com/fire-damage-tips for more Fire Damage Emergency Tips. 

Emergency Fire Planning by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

12/11/2017 (Permalink)

Its winter time which also brings holiday dinners with candles and christmas lights!  

Here are some preventative ways to stay safe in case a fire breaks out in your home! Fire moves very fast, estimates say you have less than 2 minutes to get out safely.

  1. Draw a map of your home including all windows and doors
  2. Find two ways out of every room
  3. Clear path from all windows and doors
  4. Choose an outdoor meeting place away from the structure & Call 911
  5. Test your smoke alarm
  6. Practice your drill with the whole family
  7. Fine tune the plan based on the practice run
  8. BE SAFE!!

Remember that people cannot be replaced, nothing is as important as getting out safely. Once you can safely return to the home you can then think about calling for assistance with smoke, fire or water damage. 

Processes in Fire Restoration by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

12/7/2017 (Permalink)

Processes in Fire Restoration by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Firstly, contact the fire restoration experts. Most of the fire restoration companies have a call centre that can be reached 24/7. After contacting the company, they will release the right professionals who will come to assess the fire damage. They always come with the appropriate equipment in their fire truck such as fire hose, fire sprinkler system and the firefighter.

The next thing you expect is the damage inspection and assessment. The professionals will carefully inspect your premises to determine the extent of the damage, smoke damage and soot damage. This will enable you and the commercial fire damage restoration company to develop a plan of action and also ensure that necessary items and rooms are cleaned up first.

Some of the damages in your premises may include damaged windows, walls, fire sprinkler system, and roofs. You therefore need to protect them against further damages. Ask the commercial fire damage restoration professionals to board up the missing doors, windows and roof tops.

If there happened to be water damages, let the water removal processes begin. The fire restoration professionals will use air movers and dehumidifiers to remove any water so that the premises are completely dry of any water.

After the fire, your utility room fire will have suffered soot damage, smoke damage and loss of property. The next step will be for the commercial fire cleanup professionals to remove soot and smoke from the surfaces. There are some specialized equipment that is used together with professional techniques to remove the soot from the ceilings, walls and other surfaces in your premises.

The rest of the items within the premises can now be cleaned and sanitized. This includes all the restorable structures and items that were damaged by the fire. Different techniques are applied by the commercial fire cleanup and restoration professionals in cleaning different items. The soot and smoke odors is also removed by use of industrial scrubbers and fogging equipment.

The final step in the fire cleanup and restoration process is getting your business to its good condition before the fire incidence. Your walls can be dried, painted and you can install a new carpet or use the old one after cleaning. You may also need major repairs such as reconstruction of the rooms and installation of new fire sprinkler system.

Visit http://www.SERVPROchemungschuylercounties.com/fire-smoke-damage-restoration for more information on commercial fire damage.

Protect Your Home This Winter by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

12/6/2017 (Permalink)

General Protect Your Home This Winter by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Winter time for most entails many candles lit, Christmas trees glowing with their pretty lights, and string lights strung along the house. While making your home cozy and comfy for the holidays, these things also come as a hazard to you and your loved ones living there. 

According to the NFPA, fire departments responded to 210 house fires within 2010-2014 caused by Christmas trees along with candles being proven to start 38% of house fires in all.

A few ways to take action this season can be to make sure all lights are turned off and unplugged from the wall sockets before everyone goes to bed at night. Also you want to make sure to blow out all candles before bed and anytime no one is at the house.

Mold Versus Mildew By SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

12/4/2017 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation Mold Versus Mildew By SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Understanding the condition of your roof is imperative when it comes to preventing water intrusion and water damages. Roofs are already one of the priciest home improvements and adding water damage into the mix is sure to exponentially increase the price tag of a water damage and intrusion fix. Given that this summer in Elmira/Horseheads was quite tumultuous, SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties has already had to patch up many roofs, but before winter, it would be an excellent idea to figure out the state of your roof to see if it needs any fixing.

Some main topics of concern when checking your roof for potential weak spots are if the shingles are damaged, if any nails have backed or fallen out, clogged gutters, or skylights that weren’t properly installed. Out of this bunch, damaged shingles are the most common culprits of intrusion that causes water damage. Missing or damaged shingles allow a lower layer of the roof to experience Mother Nature and the water damage that happens to the roof will eventually work its way into a house. For similar reasons, it is important to make sure all nails are properly intact. Clogged gutters do not allow the water to flow naturally down the side of the house, but rather pool into location and can cause water damage. Again, this is fairly similar to the skylights that let water pool in one location and wear away at a roof in one spot.

For any questions concerning SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties water damage services or their other services, contact the office at 607-846-3685.

Smoke...Do you know the difference? By SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

12/1/2017 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Smoke...Do you know the difference? By SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties discussing smoke damage.

Did you know that there are actually different types of smoke which can cause damage to your home and contents during a fire? When we access the damage caused by fire and smoke, we take into account the cause of the fire and the type of smoke damage. This way, we make sure that the proper cleaning supplies and techniques are used to clean the fire and smoke damage. Just like there are different methods you would use to get a stain out of your favorite shirt based on what kind of stain it is, we use different cleaning methods based on what kind of smoke caused the damage to your home and contents.

Wet Smoke is occurs when plastic and rubber burn. The fire most likely burned at a lower temperature than other types of fire and leaves a very strong, pungent odor. Wet smoke leaves a sticky residue. There are often smoke webs in the corners that can be difficult to clean.

Dry Smoke often occurs when paper and wood burn. These materials burn quickly and at very high temperatures. The smoke rises and can cause a lot of damage to the ceilings and even higher levels that were not directly affected by the fire itself. 

Protein Fire Residue occurs from evaporation of material rather than an actual fire. This type of smoke can be hard to see, but causes a discoloration or paints and varnishes. Protein fire residue has a very strong odor which can be hard to get rid of.

Fuel Oil Soot often happens when a furnace has a “puff back”. This is caused when a furnace malfunctions and the HVAC system throws smoke throughout the home by way of the duct system. The furnace will need to be replaced or repaired before cleaning can begin to ensure that the problem does not occur again. A duct cleaning will also need to be performed so that left over soot in the ducts doesn’t get thrown around the affected areas again. 

No need to worry about figuring out what type of smoke damage you have, our SERVPRO team will assess the type of smoke that has affected your property and decide what cleaning methods will be the best.

How does Ozone cleaning work by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

12/1/2017 (Permalink)

Cleaning How does Ozone cleaning work by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties discusses Ozone cleaning.

The use of ozone can be a very effective way of removing odor from a property. SERVPRO may commonly use this method following fire damage cleaning, skunk odor to the property, mold or full property cleaning. SERVPRO will provide a free estimate of your situation and decide if Ozone will be the best and most appropriate method of odor removal. 

When it comes to successful deodorization the first step is to clean/remove or fix what is causing the odor, for example the best chance of success would be to clean the fire damage first, fix a leaking pipe that is causing a musty odor, or remove the garbage from an area before starting the ozone process. It will be crucial to remove items emitting odor.

How it works: Basically, ozone removes odor by destroying the molecules, bacteria, and spores that cause unpleasant smells.  Ozone (O3) is a highly reactive molecule and is very quick to chemically react with particles that it comes into contact with in the air and on surfaces.  The extra oxygen atom in the ozone attaches itself to other molecules, chemically changing their structure to create non-offensive molecules – eliminating the smell. *Ozonesolutions.com

For more questions regarding our deodorization methods please feel free to call our office and we would be happy to help!

Get your home winter ready with these simple steps! by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schulyer Counties

12/8/2016 (Permalink)

Community Get your home winter ready with these simple steps! by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schulyer Counties Get your home winter ready with these simple steps! by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schulyer Counties

Getting yourself ready for winter is a snap. Gloves? Check! Scarf? Right here. But readying your home for a long, cold season is another story. So, until someone invents a turtleneck sweater you can put around your house when it gets cold, there's some organizing to do. We've got the tips to help you.

Strategy for Saving

Organizing your home for winter can seem like an annoying and perhaps unnecessary chore. But the financial benefits will outweigh any feelings of being "put out." Winter heating costs can skyrocket if your windows are poorly insulated, your plumbing breaks, or if the heating system is out-of-date. Ensuring your home is prepped properly can save you a nice chunk of change while protecting your property for years to come. 

Break It Down

Looking at a giant to-do list is overwhelming. To save frustration, break it down into two or three jobs you can tackle over the next three to four weekends. First up, windows. Check each one in the house for drafts and insulation needs. The following week, inspect pipes to avoid an unfortunate burst in January. You can make things even easier by dividing the job among the family. Assign each person a room to inspect and report back on whether it's ready for winter.

Three Steps to a Safe Season

#1: Prep the Plumbing

Drain the water from your outdoor faucets and garden hoses and arrange to have any in-ground sprinkler pipes blown out. Roll up the garden hoses and store them inside. Identify any "problem" pipes that are prone to freezing in the house and consider using heat tape to keep them warm during extremely cold weather. If the worst happens, ensure everyone in the family knows how to turn off the water at the source. This will minimize leaking when and if a pipe bursts.

#2: Heat Things Up

Everyone enjoys cozy evenings by a crackling fire?  Ensure your fireplace is ready to provide warm nights all winter. Be sure to have the chimney inspected and cleaned by a professional before the first frost. Also, have a professional perform a routine check of the heating systems before cold weather arrives. This should include vacuuming the vents and other heating components. If your furnace has a filter, check to see if it needs replacing. For more energy savings, consider installing a setback thermostat that keeps the home cooler when you are asleep or away.

#3: Seal the Leaks

Keep drafts to a minimum this winter. If you have them, install storm windows and doors -- and don't overlook the basement. Add or replace worn weather stripping around the doors and windows and caulk any gaps. If doorstops are worn, replace them. If any pipes or ducts travel through an exterior wall, be sure to use caulking and weather-stripping around all entry points. These steps will block any potential entry points for cold air. That's an idea you can warm up to.

 

Winter is coming! Here are some ways you can prevent frozen pipes! by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

12/2/2016 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Winter is coming! Here are some ways you can prevent frozen pipes! by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties Winter is coming! Here are some ways you can prevent frozen pipes! by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Within the last couple weeks tempatures have been plummeting fast and your pipes could be at serious risk. Water has a unique property in that it expands as it freezes. This expansion puts tremendous pressure on whatever is containing it, including metal or plastic pipes.

Preventing Frozen Pipes

Drain water from swimming pool and water sprinkler supply lines following manufacturer's or installer's directions.

Remove, drain, and store hoses used outdoors. Close inside valves supplying outdoor hose bibs. Open the outside hose bibs to allow water to drain. Keep the outside valve open so that any water remaining in the pipe can expand without causing the pipe to break.

Check around the home for other areas where water supply lines are located in unheated areas. Look in the basement, crawl space, attic, garage, and under kitchen and bathroom cabinets. Both hot and cold water pipes in these areas should be insulated.

Consider installing specific products made to insulate water pipes like a "pipe sleeve" or installing UL-listed "heat tape," "heat cable," or similar materials on exposed water pipes. Newspaper can provide some degree of insulation and protection to exposed pipes – even ¼” of newspaper can provide significant protection in areas that usually do not have frequent or prolonged temperatures below freezing.

During Cold Weather, Take Preventative Action

Keep garage doors closed if there are water supply lines in the garage.

Open kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors to allow warmer air to circulate around the plumbing. Be sure to move any harmful cleaners and household chemicals up out of the reach of children.

When the weather is very cold outside, let the cold water drip from the faucet served by exposed pipes. Running water through the pipe - even at a trickle - helps prevent pipes from freezing.

Keep the thermostat set to the same temperature both during the day and at night. By temporarily suspending the use of lower nighttime temperatures, you may incur a higher heating bill, but you can prevent a much more costly repair job if pipes freeze and burst.

If you will be going away during cold weather, leave the heat on in your home, set to a temperature no lower than 55° F.

If you find yourself in the situation where your pipes have burst call SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties were always here to help!

5 Holiday Safety Tips By SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

11/28/2016 (Permalink)

Community 5 Holiday Safety Tips By SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties 5 Holiday Safety Tips By SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

It’s that time of year again! Already the stores are jammed from one end to the other with holiday decorations, trinkets, treats and toys. I know I get wrapped up in the excitement just like everyone else. But while we’re sipping our cider and hanging the wreath, there are hazards lurking in your old decoration box in the attic. This is the perfect time of year to do a few safety checks so that the rest of your holidays are safe and stress free.

Follow these five tips for holiday safety:

1) Inspect those lights! A frayed wire is a recipe for disaster, especially if it’s wound around a drying up tree. Carefully inspect all holiday lights before you hang them to ensure they aren’t going to pose a fire hazard. There is nothing less jolly than a Christmas tree set ablaze.

2) Keep lights and wires away from young children and pets. Holiday lights can often contain PVC coatings and be tainted with lead. You wouldn’t want your little ones to be handling them and then sticking their hands in their mouth. This is an unexpected source of lead exposure that is easy to avoid. After you are done with your decorating, wash your hands thoroughly.

3) Replace lights with safer alternatives. The thing to look for when purchasing lights is a label that says RoHS (Reduction of Hazardous Substances) which means that no lead is used in making the lights. Some companies don’t have this label but will confirm their lead status if you ask. EnvironmentalLights.com carries a variety of LED holiday lights that are free of lead.

4) Be aware of toy recalls. It’s easy to pile the toys into your cart without a thought. But what happens if the scooter you bought for Billy has been recalled for a laceration hazard and you don’t know it? Investigating toy recalls is a worthy time investment when buying new or used toys for kids. You can subscribe to the Consumer Product Safety Commissions email list and you’ll get a digest that includes the weekly recalls of current toys. This way you’ll be alerted if something you bought pops up. You can also search SaferProducts.gov for toys and other items to see if anything you already have has been recalled in the past. It might just be a simple repair kit or it could be something more dangerous like lead paint. It’s worth it to check!

5) Check and replace smoke and carbon monoxide detection device batteries. This is the perfect time to test and check all your safety devices in your home. Replace batteries in your smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors during the holidays. It will keep you and your family safer and it will be easy to remember when you last replaced them.

Now that you have those holiday safety tips out of the way, you can refill your cider and put your feet up for a relaxing Holiday Season!

Call SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties 24/7

NEW MOLD LAW 2016 by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

10/20/2016 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation NEW MOLD LAW 2016 by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties NEW MOLD LAW 2016

The Department's new Mold Program, which is responsible for enforcing Article 32 of the New York State Labor Law, establishes licensing requirements and minimum work standards for professionals engaged in mold assessment and remediation. There are three main components to the new law:

 

  • Training: The Mold Program will protect consumers by requiring contractors to obtain appropriate training prior to being licensed to perform mold assessment, remediation or abatement services.

 

  • Licensing: Contractors will not be allowed to advertise or perform covered work without the required license, with limited exceptions such as home or business owners performing work on their own properties.

 

  • Minimum Work Standards: The Mold Program also establishes new minimum work standards for mold assessments and remediation activities by licensed professionals, including:

 

  • Protection against fraud by prohibiting the performance of both the assessment and remediation on the same property by the same individual;

 

  • Protection against fraud by requiring an independent mold assessment to define the scope of the remediation work;

 

  • Identification of disinfectant products, consistent with U.S. Environmental Protection Agency standards;

 

  • Provision of personal protection equipment to employees, as necessary;

 

  • Posted notice of the project and the contractor's licenses; and

 

  • Completion of a post-remediation assessment.

 

 SERVPRO Franchise Professionals have the training, protective gear, and specialized equipment necessary to handle your mold problem.

What to do when you find mold by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

10/20/2016 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation What to do when you find mold by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties What to do when you find mold by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

In as little as 48 hours, mold can quickly become a problem in your home or business when there’s a water intrusion, like a roof leak or leaking water line. Mold can cause health effects and can also cause significant damage to your property. SERVPRO Franchise Professionals have the training, protective gear, and specialized equipment necessary to handle your mold problem.

Have a Mold Problem? Call Today 

If you have a mold problem in your home or business, your primary focus should be safety:

  • Significant mold growth can occur in 48-72 hours.
  • Mold may present a greater risk to children, the elderly, and anyone with respiratory problems.
  • A strong, musty odor may indicate hidden mold behind drywall or under carpeting.

What to Do:

  • Stay out of affected areas.
  • Turn off the HVAC system and fans.
  • Contact a SERVPRO Franchise Professional for mold remediation services.

What NOT to Do:

  • Don’t touch or disturb the mold.
  • Don’t blow air across any surfaces with visible or suspected mold growth.
  • Don’t attempt to dry the area yourself.
  • Don’t spray bleach or other disinfectants on the mold.

How To Clean Your House 20 Minutes a Day for 30 Days By SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

10/19/2016 (Permalink)

Cleaning How To Clean Your House 20 Minutes a Day for 30 Days By SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties How To Clean Your House 20 Minutes a Day for 30 Days By SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

When I first learned to clean my own place, I thought Saturday had to be an all day clean-a-thon. I didn't really have a concept of how to balance the work load during the week so weekends could be reserved for larger projects or even you know…fun! Now I clean in 20 minutes a day — every day — and things just seem to take care of themselves. Here's a glimpse at the schedule I use!

No one said you had to do everything at once and even when time seems short, if you can manage one task a day, things should start to work themselves out. Adjust this list as your family's needs require (those with more or less children might require doing certain activities more or less). If it's easier, take a blank calendar and fill it in accordingly so easier tasks are on days where your day is go, go, go and reserve the more difficult ones for days when things are a little lighter. Here are 5 tips to help make these 30 days a success:

1- Dealing With What Comes Through The Door

Set up a small area by the front door to act as a "landing strip” for incoming items to your home.

2- Do Your Dishes After Every Meal

This will help you stay on top of your kitchen instead of having it turn into a monster! No one really wants to do them (after all, you probably cooked dinner to boot). But waiting for another meal or until you have enough to fill the dishwasher just makes things feel overwhelming and easier to put off. The same goes for taking out trash as well. If you need to take the trash out, place it by the front door to go out in the morning or dispose of it that night so it's over and done with.

3- Laundry

If you have a washer and dryer at home, do a little bit each day. Spread things out so you don't feel bogged down by 200 towels and stinky socks. If you take things to a laundromat, sort clothes as you go so things are easier to load into machines when you get there. Fold them before you come home so you aren't dumping baskets out on your sofa or bed and they can go straight into drawers and closets. Not feeling inspired? Treat yourself... to a new laundry basket. It's the little things.

4- Whistle While You Work

No one really enjoys cleaning, but singing, humming, whistling or turning up the stereo are all great options to keep the beat in your feet and have fun while working.

5- Set a Timer

Most items on the list below should take no more than 20 minutes total. It's easy to rationalize 20 minutes, but it's also easy to get distracted by phone calls, emails, children and other projects that call your name as you tackle each chore. Set a timer for 5 or 10 minutes (which ever works best for you) and that way when it sounds you know exactly how much time you have left. If you find yourself off task it's easy to get back on track.

 

Here is an example of the list-

  1. Surface clean living room and kitchen (pick up stray items, dust, sweep, vacuum)
  2. Clean bathrooms (toilets, showers, floors, walls, mirrors)
  3. Surface clean bedrooms (put away toys, clothes, dust)
  4. Surface clean "extra" rooms (basement, office, play room)
  5. Surface clean living room and kitchen
  6. Clean bathrooms
  7. Clean all interior windows (white vinegar and newspaper works great and is cheap!)
  8. Sweep and vacuum all floors in the house (don't forget stairs)
  9. Surface clean bedrooms
  10. Deep clean living room (mirrors, baseboards, dust artwork)
  11. Clean bathrooms
  12. Clean out closets (hang up clothes, mittens, jackets, hats)
  13. Surface clean "extra" rooms
  14. Deep clean bedrooms (organize drawers, check under bed, tidy closet, dust artwork, fans, lights, mop)
  15. Surface clean living room and kitchen
  16. Deep clean bathrooms (clean inside drawers, inside of trash cans, tops of mirrors, tile, mop)
  17. Clean all door knobs, phones, entertainment equipment (remote controls), switch plates, banisters and other things that are repeatedly touched.
  18. Clean out the refrigerator, take stock of food, organize pantry
  19. Clean entryway, sweep porch (if you have one), clean out car (because they're often our home away from home)
  20. Surface clean living room and kitchen
  21. Surface clean bathrooms
  22. Surface clean bedrooms
  23. Sweep and vacuum all floors in the house
  24. Clean linen closet, straighten towels, sheets or regular closet if not applicable
  25. Surface clean living room and kitchen
  26. Deep clean kitchen (scrub appliances, wash trash cans, base boards, wipe down and straighten cabinets)
  27. Surface clean bathrooms
  28. Surfaces clean bedrooms
  29. Clean one item you've been meaning to get to and haven't (deep clean your stove, wipe down all light fixtures, tackle a particularly unruly area)
  30. Sweep and vacuum all floors in the house

To this list you can also add chores that need to be done monthly or quarterly. It's easier to plan for larger tasks like steam cleaning a sofa or a heavy traffic hallway, when it feels like part of the routine instead of that thing you keep putting off and dreading.

Habits are formed by doing and one of the best ways to change a bad habit is to replace it with a good habit. So if the time spent right when you come home from work is usually filled with email reading or a short nap, try switching this out with your cleaning instead. Filling these first 20 minutes of your time at home with quick cleaning will build good habits and help you stay on top of the game without feeling like it's a huge chore.

 

 

 



 

What to Do When Your Hot Water Heater is Leaking by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

10/19/2016 (Permalink)

Water Damage What to Do When Your Hot Water Heater is Leaking by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties What to Do When Your Hot Water Heater is Leaking by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Hot water heaters, whether gas or electric, will last you about 10 – 12 years if you take good care of them. Even so, there’s always a chance your water heater could leak. This isn’t the end of the world – most small hot water heater leaks can be patched up pretty easily. And the best part? There are a number of things you can do before you call a plumber to make it even easier!

Cut the power

The first thing you should do when you find a hot water leak is turn off the fuel source leading to the water heater. If you have a gas water heater, find your thermostat. You should see a little knob with three settings: ON, OFF and PILOT. Switch it to OFF or PILOT to shut off the gas and make the heater safe to work on. If you have an electric water heater, go to your breaker panel and find the breaker labeled “Water Heater”. Turn it off to cut the power to your unit.

Shut off the water

All set? Next, you want to turn off the water, which is easy to do. First, you’ll need to find the cold water line leading to your water heater. There should be a valve on the line – turn it to the right until it closes. This will cut off the water and allow you to move on to the next step: draining the water heater.

Drain the water tank

In many ways, draining your hot water heater is the most important step – and it’s certainly the most involved! First, find the drain valve near the bottom of your hot water heater and attach a garden hose to it. Run the hose to a floor drain or sump pit. Once you’ve got the hose in place, open the valve. On older hot water heaters this may look like an ordinary spigot, while many new hot water heaters have a drain stem with a slot for a screwdriver.

Once you open the drain valve, you may notice water either doesn’t flow or doesn’t flow very well. This is because there’s a vacuum in the water heater. To break the vacuum, open any hot water faucet in your home. This will let air into the water tank and allow it to drain more easily. Once you establish a good flow, the whole tank should drain in about an hour.

And of course if its to late and the water has already made it impossible to clean up! Call us here at SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties! 607-846-3685

 

Would you know how to react in the case of a fire? By SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

8/29/2016 (Permalink)

General Would you know how to react in the case of a fire? By SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties Would you know how to react in the case of a fire? By SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties.

This knowledge is vital to your safety since it could affect whether or not you escape a fire safely. Below are some fire safety tips to keep in mind.

Prior to a fire, create a fire escape plan A carefully designed fire escape plan can save you and your family's life. Should a fire occur, your family's safety will depend on everyone's rational reactions. Most fire deaths occur when people panic. The old motto "be prepared" is essential in escaping a fire safely. Exit drills in the home and a carefully designed escape plan is your key to a safe escape

Recipe for an effective fire safety plan: Draw the floor plan of your home. Indicate all doors, windows and other possible escape routes from each room in your home. Draw arrows to indicate the normal exits which will be your primary escape route (your best way out of the house is your normal route to the door). With a different color, draw arrows to indicate a second exit from each room in the home.

Put together a fire safety plan of your own to be ready in case of a house fire.

Agree on a meeting place outside your home where every member of the household will gather after escaping a fire to wait for the fire department. This allows you to inform the fire department if anyone is trapped inside the burning building. Once you are out, stay out!

Practice your escape plan at least twice a year. Have a fire drill in your home. Appoint someone to be a monitor and have everyone participate. A fire drill is not a race. Get out quickly, but carefully.

If you live in a two-story house and you must escape from a second-story window, be sure there is a safe way to reach the ground. Fire escape ladders are recommended for a fast and safe exit from two and three level buildings. Make special arrangements for children, seniors, and people with disabilities. People who have difficulty moving should have a phone in their sleeping area and, if possible, should sleep on the ground floor.

Make sure everyone in the household can unlock all doors and windows quickly, even in the dark. Windows or doors with security bars need to be equipped with quick-release devices and everyone in the household should know how to use them.

Once at the meeting place, have one person go to a neighbor's phone to call the fire department. In addition to telling them your name and address, tell them if anyone is still in the house.

Remember: GET OUT FIRST! CALL FOR HELP AFTER.

How to Prevent Water Damage In Your Home

8/22/2016 (Permalink)

Water Damage How to Prevent Water Damage In Your Home How to Prevent Water Damage in Your Home, by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Water damage is the No. 1 culprit that weakens your home’s foundation and the very core that holds your house together.

You’ve heard about core strength for your body. Well, water damage hits at the core strength of your house, eventually causing serious structural damage. Damp wood invites termites and carpenter ants; plus, it causes mold and mildew.

Here are three easy things to do to that will give you piece of mind the next time heavy storms hit.

#1. Ensure Good Drainage

Why it matters: Poor drainage weakens your foundation, causing cracks, uneven settling, and pathways for water to enter your home. 

How to do it:

  • Clean your gutters routinely. A clogged gutter will send cascades of water down the side of your house, damaging your siding and foundation.
  • Ensure your downspouts direct water 5 to 10 feet away from your house.
  • Make sure your yard is sloped at least 6 inches over a 10-foot span away from your foundation. That slope keeps water from getting down right next to your foundation, where it could cause walls to lean, crack the masonry, and create leaks. (For crawl spaces, keeping water away makes sure excess water doesn’t pool underneath your floor, making for damp conditions that encourage mold, rot, and insects.)
  • But don’t let the soil get too dry, either. Long dry spells let the soil around your house dry out and shrink. A big rain may make the soil expand, putting pressure on your foundation walls. In a drought, run a soaker hose at least 6 inches from the foundation and 3 inches under the soil to keep the soil from contracting and expanding.

Maintenance cost: Very little. Cleaning gutters can be a no-cost DIY job, or you can hire a pro for $50 to $250, depending on the size and height of your home. To get the soil slope you need, you might have to buy some additional topsoil.

Worst case if you put it off: Your foundation could settle, cracking your basement walls. The cost to stabilize, repair, and seal deteriorated foundation walls is a whopping $15,000 to $40,000.

#2. Test Your Sump Pump Regularly

Why it matters: Sump pumps come to life during storms. That’s not when you want to realize yours isn’t working properly. You should check it at least once a year, and ideally perform several checks during heavy storm seasons.

How to test your sump pump:

  1. Slowly fill the sump pump pit with water. Watch for the “float” (similar to the float in your toilet) to rise, which should turn on the pump. Then watch to make sure the water level falls.
  2. Test your backup pump the same way, but unplug the main pump first.
  3. If you don’t have a backup pump — or a generator — and are on municipal water, get one that runs on water pressure. If you’re on well water, your only option is the battery kind.

Maintenance cost: Testing is free; a water-powered backup sump pump, including installation, costs $150 to $350; a new battery for a battery-operated sump starts around $200.

Worst case if you put it off: Your basement could flood, ruining everything in it, including drywall and carpeting. (Did you know your regular insurance doesn’t cover flooding?) Plus you run the risk of mold and mildew — which can also be a very expensive problem.

#3. Check for Water Leaks and Fix Them.

Why it matters: Persistent leaks lead to mold and mildew, rot, and even termites and carpenter ants (they like chewing soggy wood, since it’s soft). Yet if you fix a leak soon after it starts, there may be no long-term damage at all.  

How to check for leaks:

  • Check for dark spots under pipes inside sink cabinets, stains on ceilings, toilets that rock, and of course drips.
  • At least once a year, inspect your roof. Repair missing, loose, and damaged shingles. Repair any cracked caulking and check for leaks around flashing.

Maintenance cost: Negligible for a simple fix, such as a new washer. A visit from a plumber might set you back $250; a roof repair, a few hundred dollars to $1,000.

Worst case if you put it off: Drips ruin the cabinet under the kitchen sink, and run down into the floor sheathing and joists underneath, so you need a structural repair, plus new cabinets and new kitchen flooring. Or the roof rots, so you need a new roof and repairs to rooms directly beneath.

If you do these three things and still have persistent water problems, such as water getting into your basement or an area of your yard keeps washing out, the solution is a bit more complicated in the form of a French drain.

Your Fall Home-Maintenance To- Do List by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

8/22/2016 (Permalink)

General Your Fall Home-Maintenance To- Do List by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties Your Fall Home-Maintenance To- Do List by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

As winter nears, it's time to prepare your home for cold weather. These steps, at least some of which most homeowners can do themselves, will lower your utility bills and protect your investment.

1. Tune up your heating system. For about $80 to $100, a technician will inspect your furnace or heat pump to be sure the system is clean and in good repair so that it can achieve its manufacturer-rated efficiency. The inspection also measures carbon-monoxide leakage. And you minimize the chance of being 200th in line for repairs on the coldest day of the year. Look for a heating and air-conditioning contractor that belongs to the Air Conditioning Contractors of America. 2. Buy a programmable thermostat. Or, if you already have one, double-check the settings. Energy Star says that, on average, for an initial investment of $50 to $100, you will save $180 annually on heating (and cooling) bills if in winter you keep the thermostat set to no higher than 70 degrees Fahrenheit when you’re at home and awake and no more than 62 degrees when you’re away or asleep. Energy Star–qualified models come with preprogrammed settings. While you’re at it, check the batteries in your smoke alarms and carbon-monoxide detectors. 3. Hit the roof. Or at least scan it closely with binoculars. Look for damaged, loose or missing shingles that may leak during winter’s storms or from melting snow. If need be, hire a handyman to repair a few shingles, or a roofer for a larger section. Check and repair breaks in the flashing seals around vent stacks and chimneys, too. If your roof is flat and surfaced with asphalt and pebbles, as many are in the Southwest, rake or blow off fall leaves and pine needles, which hold moisture, says Bill Richardson, president of the American Society of Home Inspectors, in Albuquerque. (Don’t sweep aside the pebbles; that will expose the asphalt to damaging sunlight.)

4. Caulk around windows and doors. Richardson says that if the gap is bigger than the width of a nickel, you need to reapply exterior caulk. Check window glazing putty, too (which seals glass into the window frame). Add weatherstripping as needed around doors, making sure you cannot see any daylight from inside your home. 5. Clean the gutters. A service charges $70 to $200 for a single-story house, depending on its size. If your gutters are full of detritus, water can back up against the house and damage roofing, siding and wood trim, plus cause leaks and ice dams. Also look for missing or damaged components that need repair. 

7. Turn off exterior faucets. Undrained water that freezes in pipes will expand and can burst. Start by disconnecting all garden hoses and draining water still in faucets. If you don’t have frost-proof faucets (homes built before ten to 12 years ago typically do not), turn off the shut-off valve inside your home.

8. Trim landscaping. Clear the area at least 1 foot away from exterior walls, and rake gunk out of corners and away from the foundation. Cut back tree limbs growing within about 5 feet of the house, or worse, scrubbing the house or roof. You will create better ventilation, help dry out surfaces and prevent decay and damage. (Different rules apply in landscapes vulnerable to wildfires)

9. Have your lawn-irrigation system professionally drained. Your sprinkler service will charge $50 to $150, depending on the size of the system. As with draining spigots, this will help avoid freezing and leaky pipes come spring.

5 Things You Need to Know About Water Damage by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

8/5/2016 (Permalink)

Water Damage 5 Things You Need to Know About Water Damage by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties 5 Things You Need to Know About Water Damage by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Has water damage happened to you? Here's what to do next to keep it from getting worse.

When a pipe burst, a drain backs up, or a flood occurs in your home, it can be hard to see the mess. A million questions will run through your mind.

What do I do now?

What's going to happen?

Is my stuff ruined?

And the most important question of all: Will my homeowner's insurance cover the damage?

There’s no doubt about it. Water damage is extremely stressful, and the more you know about it, the better you’ll be able to decide how to address it. Here are five things that every homeowner needs to know about water damage.

1. There are different insurance policies for flood damage and water damage.

You might think that water is water, whether it’s from flooding or a burst pipe, but flood damage is not covered under homeowner’s insurance. If you live in an area likely to experience flooding, you will probably already have a separate policy through the National Flood Insurance Policy (NFIP). When you report the claim to the insurance company, make sure to specify whether the claim is for water damage or for flood damage, so they can begin adjusting your claim correctly.

2. Not all water damage is covered by your insurance.

It is a good idea to look over your insurance policy and familiarize yourself with any exclusion to your water damage coverage. For instance, most policies cover sudden damage, like water damage from a really bad storm or from an overflowing washing machine. On the other hand, any water damage that happens because you didn’t maintain the property may be excluded, as well as gradual leaks that caused water damage over time.

3. Once water damage has happened, the clock is ticking before it gets worse.

When your property has been water damaged, you don’t have the luxury of waiting around for a convenient time to start the cleanup. Secondary damage from mold growth can present serious health risks associated with mold in the living environment.

Mold spores are everywhere, but they need moisture and a nutrient source to grow. And that is exactly what your wet carpet or drywall offers.

There is a 24 to 48 hour window from the time something gets wet until mold can begin to grow. After that time, mold will multiply rapidly. When mold growth is widespread, you may need the services of SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties to safely treat and remove the mold.

To prevent mold growth, you will need to get your property completely dry again within that 48-hour window. To do this, Contact us so we can safely extract and remove any sighns of water. We have professional water removal equipment and drying equipment to get the job done as quickly as possible. SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties have 24-hour a day emergency phone lines, so you can start recovering your property almost immediately.

4. Your insurance company needs to know right away.

It’s a good idea to call your insurance company right away when you discover water damage. Your insurance agent can start the claims process immediately, as well as guide you through the first steps you will need to take to protect your property from more damage, like stopping the source of the water at the main water turnoff.

5. The pollution level of the water is important.

Water damage is categorized as one of three levels by how polluted the water source was that caused the damage.

Category 1: Water from a clean water source, like a fresh water line for a dishwasher. This water will not cause illness or any ill effects.

Category 2: Water that may cause illness through contact. It may have bacteria in it,

Category 3: Water that is highly contaminated. Contact can cause severe illness or death. Think sewage backup, an overflowing toilet, or storm waters.

Even though water may start out as Category 1, that doesn’t mean it will stay that way. Any contamination that the water touches, such as dirty carpeting or soil from the ground, can change water damage Category to 2 or even Category 3. And since standing breeds bacteria, the longer the water is around, the worse the contamination of your property.

More contamination can mean that we will have to use more aggressive measures to clean your structure and property, and it might mean that soft furnishings, like your carpet and the carpet pad, may have to be discarded for your safety.

Water damage can be dangerous and expensive, so preventing water damage is an important part of home maintenance. But if you know the basics of what to do once it happens, you can prevent it from doing its worst.

Call SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties.

Weather for Horseheads July 22nd- July 31st by SERVPRO of Chemung & Scuyler Counties

7/22/2016 (Permalink)

Community Weather for Horseheads July 22nd- July 31st by SERVPRO of Chemung & Scuyler Counties Weather for Horseheads July 22nd- July 31st by SERVPRO of Chemung & Scuyler Counties

Weather For horseheads and the surrounding areas will be in the 90's all week.

A Severe Thunder Storm alert has been issued for Elmira, Horseheads, and the surrounding areas.

Want to keep the heat out? Take our advise! By SERVPRO of Chemung & Shcuyler Counties

7/22/2016 (Permalink)

Community Want to keep the heat out? Take our advise! By SERVPRO of Chemung & Shcuyler Counties Want to keep the heat out? Take our advise! By SERVPRO of Chemung & Shcuyler Counties

Protecting Your Home From Extreme Heat

During the sweltering heat of summer, your home is supposed to be your oasis. Your place of cool relief. But during the worst heat waves, the weather can start to get in the way of your comfort.

With just a few simple steps, you can keep the heat at bay, while keeping your air-conditioning system from becoming overworked.


1. Insulate your attic.

Proper attic insulation goes a long way toward preserving your comfort; it’s not just for keeping heat in during the winter, it can also ward heat off during the summer. Whether blown in or installed in rolls, it can make a huge difference in your savings and the temperature in your home.


2. Install an attic door cover.

While insulation is a great all-over solution for the attic, particular attention should be paid to the hatch or stairway used for attic access. Most of the heat that flows between the attic and the rest of the house comes through this access point. By adding an attic door cover, the flow of heat out of the attic can be greatly reduced.


3. Caulk windows and doors.

When it comes to insulating against heat, the attic is just the beginning. Poorly sealed windows can let warm air in. Caulking them can do a lot to preserve your comfort. Likewise, doors that don’t seal properly when closed can let in substantial amounts of warm air; by weather stripping them, you can help halt the loss of comfort and energy.


4. Install a programmable thermostat.

To help fight heat more efficiently and effectively, consider a programable thermostat. They create substantial energy savings without affecting comfort by reducing system use during times of lesser cooling need, such as at night when temperatures are lower or during the workday when your home may be empty.


5. Consider a multi-stage air conditioner.

Another highly effective tool in the fight against wilting summer heat is the installation of a multi-stage air conditioner. Since they can adjust their cooling output based on demand, multi-stage air conditioners can often run at a lower speed, helping you use less energy to maintain the same amount of comfort.

Will My Fire Pit Affect My Homeowners Insurance? By SERVPRO of Chemung & Shcuyler Counties.

6/21/2016 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Will My Fire Pit Affect My Homeowners Insurance? By SERVPRO of Chemung & Shcuyler Counties. Will My Fire Pit Affect My Homeowners Insurance? By SERVPRO of Chemung & Shcuyler Counties.

Whether you're picturing roasting marshmallows with the kids or a relaxing night with friends, it's easy to see the appeal of a backyard fire pit. Fire pits and fireplaces are the most requested outdoor design element. There's more to consider, though, than whether you want to purchase something small or build your own structure. From safety to whether it will affect your homeowners insurance, you may want to consider a few things before you start warming yourself by the fire.

How could my policy be affected?

If you're not sure whether you need to disclose a fire pit on your property, or you want to know if having one may necessitate changes to your homeowners policy, it's best to to talk to your insurance agent. It's a good idea to discuss the fire pit you've purchased, installed or are planning for and then review your homeowners insurance policy's coverage to help you determine if any changes are necessary.

You may want to increase your coverage limits, which is the maximum amount your insurer will pay for covered claims. If you spend the time and money to design and build a backyard fire pit, particularly one that increases the value of your property, you'll want to be sure your homeowners insurance cover limits are high enough to help pay for repairs or replacement if your structure is damaged by a covered peril.

It may also be a good idea to review your current policy's liability coverage. This coverage may help protect you if you are found legally responsible for a guest's injuries after getting too close to the flames or damage to someone else's property should sparks ignite a neighbor's garage.

What Coverages Apply?

Any potential effects to your homeowners insurance may be determined by whether your fire pit is portable or a permanent structure. A small fire pit that can be easily moved will likely be considered personal property under most homeowners policies, and if it's damaged by a covered peril, you'll likely find homeowners insurance will help protect it. If you have a larger stone or cement fire pit or fire place that is permanently installed in your yard, it may be considered an unattached structure and fall under your policy's other structures coverage.

Other Considerations

Of course, you probably don't expect your fire pit to lead to an insurance claim, and you may be able to help prevent that situation by following some basic safety guidelines. SERVPRO suggests placing chairs away from the fire and making sure a fire extinguisher and fire blanket are nearby. At the end of the night, follow the manufacturer's instructions for putting out the fire properly.

Before you buy a portable fire pit or start designing your own backyard fireplace, it's important to make sure you've considered more than just enjoying some time by the fire. A local agent can help you review your insurance coverages so you can make any desired adjustments. Then you can enjoy nights by the fire with a little more peace of mind.

Do you "Know" your appraiser? By SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties.

6/14/2016 (Permalink)

Community Do you "Know" your appraiser? By SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties. Do you "Know" your appraiser? By SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties.

In an ever-changing market full of technology, competition, and the desire to have the best CSI,  who is the FACE of your company ?  

The IA industry has been evolving for years.  From Polaroid Instamatics to 35 MM, handwriting estimates with 35 manuals in the trunk to Photo Apps and multiple Estimating Software Platforms,  how we do the job has changed but more importantly,who is doing the job it the most critical element.

Having an Appraiser license isn't just a piece of paper, it is a privilege and something that should require not just the ability to pass a test,  but the knowledge of the claim industry and how to interact with your clients.  

Continuing education from both customer service and estimatic standpoints is critical to ensure the right person for the job.  

Understanding policy provisions and State Regulations are equally important.  

Price points might be used as a factor in selecting a vendor from an expense perspective, but the cost of a poor customer experience cannot be valued.

Know your appraiser.  Confirm experience and make the commitment to quality service over cost.   

Continued renewals are priceless.  

5 Unexpected Home Maintenance Costs by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

6/14/2016 (Permalink)

Community 5 Unexpected Home Maintenance Costs by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties 5 Unexpected Home Maintenance Costs by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

As a new homeowner, you might be familiar with some of the basic maintenance tasks like cleaning out your gutters, Trimming the trees or replacing batteries in smoke detectors, but what about those unexpected things?

We all know that unforeseen issues can crop up when owning a home, so it helps to try and budget for these unpredictable events. You may want to consider building up a home repair fund between 1 to 3 percent per year of your home’s value. So, if your home is worth $300,000, that’s $3,000 a year or $250 a month.

Here are some unexpected home maintenance costs to think about saving for:

1. Critters

As a new homeowner, you might be familiar with some of the basic maintenance tasks like cleaning out your gutters, Trimming the trees or replacing batteries in smoke detectors, but what about those unexpected things?

We all know that unforeseen issues can crop up when owning a home, so it helps to try and budget for these unpredictable events. You may want to consider building up a home repair fund between 1 to 3 percent per year of your home’s value. So, if your home is worth $300,000, that’s $3,000 a year or $250 a month.

Here are some unexpected home maintenance costs to think about saving for:

2. Digging Dogs

Having a backyard for a dog to run in is a fun benefit of owning a home, but it may lead to some costly repairs if your dog doesn't have enough entertainmnet. According to The Humane Society of the United States, digging a hole may be a dog's way of saying it wants some attention and play time. You can likely fill the holes in the lawn, but if your dog digs under your fence, and the damage is bad enough, you may have to repair it.

 3. Washer Overload

Does your new home have a high-efficiency (HE) washing machine? Putting too much soap or the wrong kind of detergent into a HE machine may cause it to overwork itself and break, says the American Cleaning Institute. Make sure to use the right amount and kind of HE detergent for your washer, or be ready to pay for potentially expensive repair if it breaks.

4. Tree Roots

 An old, large tree in front (or back) of your home looks great and can provide some excellent shade. Its roots, however, could potentially invade the drain line leading out of your home and may lead to a hefty repair bill.  Digging up your lawn isn’t something you consider when you see a beautiful tree on your property — but a sewer line inspection from the street to your home might be a good idea for peace of mind.

 5. Leaking Windows

 Unless it’s pouring rain on the day of your home inspection, it’s hard to spot leaky windows in your new home. Caulking a window can be easy enough, but replacing a window or repairing any damage a leak may cause could get expensive.

It’s really hard to be prepared for everything that might happen in your home, but it doesn’t hurt to play it safe and save for a rainy day in case something does come up.

If anything occurs that SERVPRO of Chemung & Schulyer Counties can help with call 607-846-3685. We are open for emergencies 24/7!

How often should you have your ducts cleaned? Here is SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties best answer!

5/31/2016 (Permalink)

General How often should you have your ducts cleaned? Here is SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties best answer! How offten should you have your ducts cleaned? Here is SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties best answer!

Curious how often you need air duct cleaning? Here is our answer to your question!

Many homeowners who've hired SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties to clean their ducts, are amazed by the difference. We agree as do many experts that there are definitely benefits to having air ducts cleaned.

We recommend getting your Ducts cleaned every three to five years. How often you need them cleaned will depend on how often you use your syetem and if anyone in your home as allergies or asthma.

Living in Upstate New York where the weather is more cold then not, we tend to use our ducts more. It would be in the homeowners best intrest to clean them more offten. Also family members with allergies will see a huge improvemnet after your ducts are cleaned. It will significantly reduce the amount of dust and other allergens floating through the air.

When to clean your air ducts.-

• You suspect that mold exists in the air ducts.

• You notice a vermin infestation somewhere in the home, or you see insects or rodents entering or exiting ductwork.

• You see a visible "poof" of dust released from the supply registers when air is exiting the vents.

If you notice black debris around the outside, that's pollutants that have been recycled through the system over and over again, and that's a sign your system is excessively soiled.

Also, take a look at your system when you change your filter. If there's a lot of dust buildup in that area, that's another sign you're overdue for a cleaning.

SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties does wonders with duct systems! Call us today to get an estimate! 607-846-3685

10 Reasons to Have your Carpets Cleaned Year Round by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

5/23/2016 (Permalink)

General 10 Reasons to Have your Carpets Cleaned Year Round by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties 10 Reasons to Have your Carpets Cleaned Year Round by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

As the weather warms and people head outdoors, it is important that you don't lose sight of what needs to be done inside. There are many reasons why carpets should not be neglected. SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties believe these top ten reasons will convince you to have your carpets cleaned year round.

1. Prolongs the life of carpeting. Regular carpet cleaning using the extraction method can increase the life of carpets significantly, protecting your floor-covering investment.

2. Protects indoor air quality. Carpets trap airborne pollutants; however, eventually those pollutants must be removed in order to protect the carpet and maintain indoor air quality.

3. Makes carpets easier to maintain. Most carpet soiling is made up of dry soils; when carpets are kept thoroughly cleaned on a regular basis, most dry soils can be removed with regular vacuuming.

4. Removes spots and stains. As with other soils, spots and stains can attract more soiling. Removing them promptly protects carpeting from damage.

5. Prevents buildup of allergens and bacteria. Moist soiling of carpets can result in the buildup of several unhealthy contaminants.

6. Enhances the appearance of any room. Clean, well-maintained carpets speak volumes about the overall cleanliness of a home or facility.

7. Improves worker morale. Workers feel better about their work environment when it is clean. This includes the carpeting. Of course this if for more of a work environment, but also it can improve your over all attitude at home. We all know a clean house is a happy house. So start with the carpets first!

8. Makes carpeting look and feel clean and fresh.

9. Removes dust mites and bedbugs that may have found a home in carpets.

10. Maintains the carpet’s warranty. Most carpet warranties require that carpets be cleaned using the extraction method within a specific amount of time, usually every 12 to 18 months.

Call SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties today for an estimate! We would love to make your home/work enviroment fresh & Clean again!

How to Avoid a Flooded Basement by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

3/4/2016 (Permalink)

Water Damage How to Avoid a Flooded Basement by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties How to Avoid a Flooded Basement by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

There are certain signs of spring we all welcome: cheery daffodils, increased daylight, and the chirping of birdsreturning from their winter vacations. Along with those happy signs of spring, a less welcome sign may be an annual event for you- basement flooding. Spring rains often bring out the worst in flawed grading and foundations, leaving homeowners with a mess. If you've never dealt with basement flooding before, there's a set procedure to getting things back in order.

First, get rid of the water. SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties has equipment  to extract the water from your home. If you have more then a few inches of water, your best bet is to leave it to the professionals. We have more powerful equipment and can get the job done quickley. After the water is removed, we will need to dry things out. We will provide as much ventalation as possible to decrease the possibilty of mold growth. Our team uses Dehumidifiers and Air Movers to dry out the rest of the structure.

Cleaing out a basement flood is alot of work and can get expensive. Here are some steps to take to prevent it from happening this spring.

  1. Gutter & Downspouts-Keep gutters free of debris and position downspouts away from the foundation. The goal is to drain storm water at least three feet away, so if necessary, consider running extensions or troughs.
  2. Foundation Cracks- Inspect the exterior foundation and your basement's walls and floors. Use epoxy to fill any foundation cracks and if warning signs are detected, apply masonry sealer indoors. For more serious problems you may want to call a pro.
  3. Sump Pump- 
    If you have a below-grade sump pump, check to make sure its well is free of debris. If you have a portable pump, position it in the lowest part of the basement and be sure it's connected to a power source.
  4. Sewers & Septics- If you haven't had your sewer inspected or your septic tank cleaned, spring is a good time to address these concerns. During periods of prolonged, heavy rainfall, clogged sewers and over-taxed septics are disasters waiting to happen. 
  5. Window Well Covers- If you have below-grade basement windows, install window well covers that will fasten securely to your home's foundation. Clear acrylic covers allow light to enter, even as they keep out rain, leaves, and pests.
  6. Generators- Remember a sump pump only works if you have power. If you live in an area plagued with frequent storms and power outages, a generator may be a long-term investment worth considering.
  7. Insurance- Review your property insurance policy and consider additional coverage, especially if you have a finished basement. Usually, homeowners' insurance does not cover flooding or sewer backups.

Spring is almost here! Are you ready? by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

3/3/2016 (Permalink)

General Spring is almost here! Are you ready? by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties Spring is almost here! Are you ready? by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

From the looks of the forcast next week it looks like Spring has Sprung. And you know what that means! I'ts time for some Spring Cleaning! Here are 10 Spring Cleaning Tips to make your like easier!

Revitalize your hibernating home with simple suggestions.

1. Work from the top down, inside to outside, to avoid getting what you just cleaned dirty again. 

2.  Do one room, even one area of one room, at a time to avoid unfinished jobs. The satisfaction of seeing one room sparkle will make the hard work feel like it's worth the effort. 

3. When tidying, reduce trips around the house by temporarily depositing items in one spot en route to but not at their final destination.

4. Do two things at once. While laundry is going, scrub the shower stall. 

5. Make small repairs. If you're not handy, hire someone. 

6. Invest in good rubber or vinyl gloves to protect your skin and nails. 

7. Dust before vacuuming or cleaning the floor. Try feather or lambswool dusters, especially extendable ones for reaching above window and door casings and into corners. Household rags are invaluable for jobs requiring a damp cloth – natural fibres work best. 

8. Buy mops with a squeeze mechanism (great for vinyl, linoleum or ceramic tile floors) and a decent-size heavy-duty pail – one with a measuring scale helps get soap-to-water ratios correct. 

9. Don't stand your brooms on their bristles. It will destroy their shape and diminish their effectiveness. Instead, get a broom holder, like the Magic Holder 5-position broom organizer. 

10. Use a Swiffer for light dusting, or your favourite broom or vacuum attachment to clean hardwood floors. Then damp-mop with a mild cleaner such as Murphy Oil Soap.

If Spring cleaning seems a bit overwhelming this year or you just cant find the time, call SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties! Our Cleaning Technicians are always here to help!

Puff Backs by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

2/19/2016 (Permalink)

Cleaning Puff Backs by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties The result of a puff back.

In the US, approximately 8 million homes still use heating oil as their main heating fuel.  Of these, an astounding 80%, or 6.4 million, are located in the Northeast.  Many of these furnaces, despite being regularly serviced, can malfunction in the form of a “puffback.”  These puffbacks wreak havoc on paint, carpet, and contents of a home.  Most often, they’re covered under your existing homeowners insurance policy.

A oil furnace puff back is an actual explosion of unburned fuel lying in the combustion chamber of the furnace.  The strength and soot expelled by this explosion depends on how much unburned oil there is.  Two major malfunctions which can cause this oil to accumulate are:

  1. Leaks in the piping supplying the oil.  If you notice a slow drip of oil on the floor, call a technician to service the equipment.  These leaks cause air bubbles to get into the piping, which can move and push little bits of oil into the combustion chamber when the furnace is off.  This accumulates, and ultimately will ignite the oil and cause a loud bang.
  2. Problems when the furnace shuts down.  Inside the oil burner is a valve which is spring loaded and stops the flow of oil precisely when the RPMs of the oil burner begins to slow.  If there is even the slightest bit of dirt or debris on this valve, it can cause the same accumulation in the combustion chamber.

If your home experiences a puffback, you may notice some thermal tracks on the walls and ceiling where the soot has settled. The soot will settle mostly near cooler areas on these surfaces, so you may notice it on nail heads on drywall, or in the corners of the ceiling.  Often, these tracks are indicators of areas of heat loss within a home as well.  However, even if you don’t notice any visible signs, that doesn’t mean the soot isn’t covering your walls, ceiling and contents. You should have the unit serviced and cleaned immediately.

If there’s evidence of soot, contact us and your insurance company. If you have coverage they possibly will pay to have all areas affected cleaned (including contents Ducts and clothing), and deodorized. We work closely with your insurance company, to take some of the stress away! Call SERVPRO of Chemung & Schyuler Counties today and we will answer any questions you may have.

Frozen Pipe Prevention by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

2/15/2016 (Permalink)

Water Damage Frozen Pipe Prevention by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties Frozen Pipe Prevention by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

What’s worse than a major home maintenance disaster? How about several major home maintenance disasters at once? For the quarter-million families who have their homes ruined and their lives disrupted each winter because of frozen water pipes, frigid nights can very quickly turn to ongoing, inconvenient, extremely expensive ordeals. In cold and warmer climates alike, pipes freeze for a combination of three central reasons: quick drops in temperature, poor insulation, and thermostats set too low. Both plastic and copper pipes can burst when they freeze, and recovering from frozen pipes is not as simple as calling a plumber. A 1/8-inch crack in a pipe can spew up to 250 gallons of water a day, causing flooding, serious structural damage, and the immediate potential for mold. In the United States, frozen pipes cause a huge amount of damage each year; unlike natural disasters, this disaster is largely preventable. By taking a few simple precautions, you can help save yourself the mess, money, and aggravation frozen pipes cause.

Your Best Bet:

Don’t Let It Happen There are a number of preventative steps you can take to keep your pipes from freezing. Here are a few simple tips: Before The Cold Remember the three central causes of frozen pipes? Quick drops in temperature, poor insulation, and thermostats set too low. You can prepare by protecting your home during the warmer months. Here’s how:

  • Insulate pipes in your home's crawl spaces and attic, even if you live in a climate where freezing is uncommon. Exposed pipes are most susceptible to freezing. Remember: The more insulation you use, the better protected your pipes will be.
  • Heat tape or thermostatically controlled heat cables can be used to wrap pipes. Be sure to use products approved by an independent testing organization, such as Underwriters Laboratories Inc., and only for the use intended (exterior or interior). Closely follow all manufacturers' installation and operation instructions.
  • Seal leaks that allow cold air inside near where pipes are located. Look for air leaks around electrical wiring, dryer vents, and pipes, and use caulk or insulation to keep the cold out. With severe cold, even a tiny opening can let in enough cold air to cause a pipe to freeze.
  • Before winter hits, disconnect garden hoses and, if possible, use an indoor valve to shut off and drain water from pipes leading to outside faucets. This reduces the chance of freezing in the short span of pipe just inside the house.

When The Mercury Drops

Even if you’ve taken the right preventative steps, extreme weather conditions can still harm your pipes. Here are a few more steps you can take:

  • A trickle of hot and cold water might be all it takes to keep your pipes from freezing. Let warm water drip overnight, preferably from a faucet on an outside wall.
  • Keep your thermostat set at the same temperature during both day and night. You might be in the habit of turning down the heat when you’re asleep, but further drops in the temperature – more common overnight – could catch you off guard and freeze your pipes.
  • Open cabinet doors to allow heat to get to un-insulated pipes under sinks and appliances near exterior walls.

Before You Leave

Travelling in the winter months might be good for the soul, but don’t forget to think about your pipes before you leave. What can you do?

  • Set the thermostat in your house no lower than 55°F (12°C).
  • Ask a friend or neighbor to check your house daily to make sure it's warm enough to prevent freezing.
  • Shut off and drain the water system. Be aware that if you have a fire protection sprinkler system in your house, it may be deactivated when you shut off the water.

If Your Pipes Do Freeze

  • If you turn on your faucets and nothing comes out, leave the faucets turned on and call a plumber.
  • Do not use electrical appliances in areas of standing water: You could be electrocuted.
  • Never try to thaw a pipe with a torch or other open flame because it could cause a fire hazard. Water damage is preferable to burning down your house!
  • You may be able to thaw a frozen pipe with the warm air from a hair dryer. Start by warming the pipe as close to the faucet as possible, working toward the coldest section of pipe.
  • If your water pipes have already burst, turn off the water at the main shutoff valve in the house; leave the water faucets turned on. Make sure everyone in your family knows where the water shutoff valve is and how to open and close it. After you have done that call SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties for24 hour service!

Why Hiring a Cleaning Service is the Perfect Valentine's Gift by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

2/4/2016 (Permalink)

General Why Hiring a Cleaning Service is the Perfect Valentine's Gift by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties Why Hiring a Cleaning Service is the Perfect Valentine's Gift by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

A little less then two weeks until Valentines Day! Are you looking for the perfect gift for that special someone? Don't gice the usual chocolate and flowers.... give the gift of time and hire us to clean! 

Don't let Valentines Day intimidate you.. you can have the perfect night! HEre's three reasons why you should hire SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties:

1. You will have more free time. Free up your weekend and delegate your chores to us. We will get your home looking spotless so you can focus on romance!

2. A clean house is always apprediated. It's the ultimate "ahh" gift because it will make your home look, smell, and feel better. You will even breath better air!

3. Make it a suprise and let your significant other come home to a clean home!

Is your partner not into the outdated gifts of Jewelry, flowers, chocolates? Then this offer will be perfect for them!

New Years Resolution to eat healthier? Chocolates wont do! A clean house is a great way to begin this year!

Choose your local SERVPRO Team! SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties are always here to help.

Early Spring is Coming! By SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

2/2/2016 (Permalink)

General Early Spring is Coming! By SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties Early Spring is Coming! By SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

The handlers of Pennsylvania's most famous groundhog, Punxsutawney Phil, say the furry rodent has failed to see his shadow, meaning he's "predicted" an early spring.

Members of the top hat-wearing Inner Circle announced the "forecast" at sunrise, just before 7:30 a.m. Tuesday.

A German legend has it that if a furry rodent sees his shadow on Feb. 2, winter will last another six weeks. If not, spring comes early.                      

 

In reality, Phil's prediction is decided ahead of time by the group on Gobbler's Knob. The tiny hill is located just outside the town for which he's named about 65 miles northeast of Pittsburgh.

Records going back to 1887 show Phil has now predicted more winter 102 times while forecasting an early spring just 18 times. There are no records for the remaining years.

Thank you Phil we are all looking forward to nicer weather ahead!

Happy Groundhog Day from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties!

Weather for Febuary 1st 2016 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

2/1/2016 (Permalink)

General Weather for Febuary 1st 2016 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties Weather for February 1st 2016 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

A beautiful Monday partly cloudy. Looks like Mother Nature forgot what season it is! We may get a little bit of rain on Wednesday, but for the most part a great week to shake off the cabin fever!

Prepping Your Home for Extreme Winter Weather by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

1/26/2016 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Prepping Your Home for Extreme Winter Weather by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties Prepping Your Home for Extreme Winter Weather by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

As we move through winter months toward spring, we need to keep vigilant and make sure our homes are properly protected.

  • If you haven’t already, consider installing storm windows, or cover existing windows with plastic, to keep cold air out.
  • If you have a snow thrower, make sure the machine has been serviced and that it’s functioning properly and ready for immediate use. Keep rock salt and/or kitty litter on hand too, so you can melt ice and gain temporary traction.
  • Keep your gutters clean of leaves and other debris so that snow or freezing rain can’t accumulate and cause an ice dam.
  • If you have branches that hang over gutters, roof areas or walkways, remove them otherwise, they can cause problems once they become heavy with ice and snow.
  • Stock up on fuel for heat in case of a long-term power outage. When used safely, backup heat sources like a fireplace, a wood, coal or pellet stove, or a camp stove, can be invaluable. Many people in the mountain communities own generators and have plenty of gasoline available; that way, they can fire up the generator to help run heat sources that are dependent on electricity, such as pellet stoves.
  • You may be isolated for several days, so have an emergency kit with flashlights, extra batteries and other emergency essentials prepared. Make sure you have an adequate supply of drinking water, and don’t forget food and water for any pets.
  • Have an emergency communications plan, In case family members are separated during a winter storm. Designate a family member or friend who lives out of the area to serve as a central contact.

Take measures now, so that, even if “the big one” hits, you’ll be well prepared.

Call SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties for any questions or concerns.

Weather for January 25th, 2016 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

1/25/2016 (Permalink)

Community Weather for January 25th, 2016 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties Weather for January 25th, 2016 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Here is todays weather for today and the rest of the week. 

Some crazy weather this week ranging from snow to rain to sunny skies. 

Enjoy!

Benefits of HVAC Cleaning by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

1/22/2016 (Permalink)

General Benefits of HVAC Cleaning by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties Benefits of HVAC Cleaning by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Indoor Air Quality

Indoor air quality is one concern that homeowners have when they decide to investigate air duct cleaning. In a typical six-room home, up to 40 pounds of dust is created annually through everyday living. Your heating and cooling system is the lungs of your home. The system taken air in and breathes air out.

Through normal occupation in a home, we generate a great deal of contaminants and air pollutants, such as dander, dust, and chemicals. These contaminants are pulled into the HVAC system and re-circulated 5 to 7 times per day, on average. Over time, this re-circulation causes a build-up of contaminants in the duct work.

While dirty ducts don’t necessarily mean unhealthy air in your home, school or workplace, they may be contributing to larger health issues or harboring contaminants that could cause serious problems for people with respiratory health conditions, autoimmune disorders or some environmental allergies.

Energy Savings

According to the U.S. Department of Energy, 25 to 40 percent of the energy used for heating or cooling a home is wasted. Contaminants in the heating and cooling system cause it to work harder and shorten the life of your system. Although filters are used, the heating and cooling system still gets dirty through normal use.

When an HVAC system is clean, it doesn’t have to work as hard to maintain the temperature you desire. As a result, less energy is used, leading to improved cost-effectiveness.

So keep your ducts clean and your bills low by calling our team in to help!

For more information on duct cleaning contact SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties today.

Preventing Frozen Pipes by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties.

1/19/2016 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Preventing Frozen Pipes by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties. Preventing Frozen Pipes by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties.

Within the last couple weeks tempatures have been plummeting fast and your pipes could be at serious risk. Water has a unique property in that it expands as it freezes. This expansion puts tremendous pressure on whatever is containing it, including metal or plastic pipes.

Preventing Frozen Pipes

Drain water from swimming pool and water sprinkler supply lines following manufacturer's or installer's directions.

Remove, drain, and store hoses used outdoors. Close inside valves supplying outdoor hose bibs. Open the outside hose bibs to allow water to drain. Keep the outside valve open so that any water remaining in the pipe can expand without causing the pipe to break.

Check around the home for other areas where water supply lines are located in unheated areas. Look in the basement, crawl space, attic, garage, and under kitchen and bathroom cabinets. Both hot and cold water pipes in these areas should be insulated.

Consider installing specific products made to insulate water pipes like a "pipe sleeve" or installing UL-listed "heat tape," "heat cable," or similar materials on exposed water pipes. Newspaper can provide some degree of insulation and protection to exposed pipes – even ¼” of newspaper can provide significant protection in areas that usually do not have frequent or prolonged temperatures below freezing.

During Cold Weather, Take Preventative Action

Keep garage doors closed if there are water supply lines in the garage.

Open kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors to allow warmer air to circulate around the plumbing. Be sure to move any harmful cleaners and household chemicals up out of the reach of children.

When the weather is very cold outside, let the cold water drip from the faucet served by exposed pipes. Running water through the pipe - even at a trickle - helps prevent pipes from freezing.

Keep the thermostat set to the same temperature both during the day and at night. By temporarily suspending the use of lower nighttime temperatures, you may incur a higher heating bill, but you can prevent a much more costly repair job if pipes freeze and burst.

If you will be going away during cold weather, leave the heat on in your home, set to a temperature no lower than 55° F.

If you find yourself in the situation where your pipes have burst call SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties were always here to help!

Wanna Save Your Marriage? Call SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

1/15/2016 (Permalink)

Cleaning Wanna Save Your Marriage? Call SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties Wanna Save Your Marriage? Call SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

These days, life is hectic. After a long day at work, coming home and doing chores sounds like one of the least appealing things in the world to do. “That’s what weekends are for!” some might say. However, we tend to disagree – weekends are meant to be spent pursuing your hobbies, and spending time with family and friends. Unless your favorite hobby is mopping the floor, or your best friend is a feather duster, we don’t think cleaning should be involved.

However, that doesn’t mean you can throw away the vacuum for good. Cleanliness compatibility is a legitimately important factor to consider before marriage.

According to new studies three in ten couples divorce over cleaning and household chores. When one partner doesn’t pull their weight around the house, it often leads to resentment on the part of the other, which can generate bigger issues.

It's a matter of opportunity cost. The time you spend vaccuming, mopping, and doing other household tasks could instead be time spent building meaningful memories with your loved ones.

That being said, in a month where the most romantic day of the year shares space with the most popular time of the year for divorce, and when 30% of marriages end because of fighting that's the result of chores, February seems like the perfect match for the gift of an effortlessly clean house.

So give your loved one what they really want this Valentine's Day: A day of cleaning from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties.

SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties will be a proud sponsor of Hockey 4 Hope

1/12/2016 (Permalink)

Community SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties will be a proud sponsor of Hockey 4 Hope Servpro of Chemung & Schuyler Counties will be a proud sponsor of Hockey 4 Hope

SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler will be sponsoring the 7th annual Hockey 4 Hope game on April 2nd, 2016. Hockey 4 Hope is a charity hockey game in Binghamton, NY which raises money to help alleviate the financial burden associated with cancer. 

Players from all over the country including Ft. Lauderdale, Florida and San Jose, California attend the game. Money raised will be donated to The Geller Oncology Fund of Lourdes Hospital and Make-A-Wish of Central, NY.

If your interested in attending the game or making a donation, please visit Hockey 4 Hope. 

8 Places With Always-Perfect Weather by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

1/11/2016 (Permalink)

Community 8 Places With Always-Perfect Weather by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties 8 Places With Always-Perfect Weather by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Need to get out of the cold and dreary weather...Think of all the things you'd talk about if you went to a place where weather was never the topic of conversation.

San Diego

Let's get this one out of the way. San Diego is the textbook example of beautiful year-round climate. It's never too hot and never too cold, with a very minimal amount of that pesky California fog to get in the way—when it does roll in, it burns off pretty quickly in the morning. Winters average at 57° F, summers at 72° F—72° F, people! If ever there was a perfect temperature, that's the magic number. The people of San Diego have adopted a sunny attitude to match, as well as a fierce affinity for being active. Isn't it crazy what a little good weather can do to a person?

Málaga, Spain

Not a lot of people know about this little Spanish doubloon, and isn't that awesome? Nothing spoils beautiful weather faster than a flock of tourists. It sits right on the Mediterranean coast and it's got one of the warmest winters of any European city. With such whimsical weather, think of all the tapas you could eat, think of the gardens you could stroll, think of the open-air markets you could peruse! Oh, the possibilities.

Canary Islands

Spain really has this whole weather thing figured out. The Spanish-owned archipelago off the coast of Morocco is one sweet slice of sunshine. The Canary Islands are close enough to the equator to always be warm, but have the benefit of the sea and trade winds to keep things moderate. The natural scenery is something prehistoric. You'll half expect a wrestling T-rex and King Kong to come tumbling out of the giant peaks, lush woodlands, and deserty Mars-like scape. Oh, they also have amazing beaches.

Sydney, Australia

This little sheila gets an average of 340 days of sunshine per year. If you live in the Midwest or Northeast, that sentence probably made you sad. Cheer up, mate. Sydney will make you forget all your troubles. March through November (spring, winter and fall to them) are the best months to be Down Under. A Sydney summer will run you the risk of experiencing a drought or heat wave, but as long as you hang by the beach or another form of watering hole, you'll be in good shape. Luckily their climate is mostly dry, so even if it's hot, there's no humidity.

Loja, Ecuador

Ecuador is a magical place where there's no such thing as daylight savings time. It's literally named after the equator, which is the sunniest latitude on the planet. Loja temperature averages in the 70s all year round, and it's also considered the music capital of Ecuador. What better muse than the sun?

El Paso, Texas

You probably know it because of the salsa, and how do you think they get such high quality salsa vegetables? Sunshine! El Paso has dry heat and just enough rainfall to keep the plants happy. Much like San Diego, El Paso is an outdoor playground. You can climb rocks in Hueco Tanks State Park or cycle through Franklin Mountains State Park—the largest urban state park.

Oahu, Hawaii

Hawaii is the United State's own little slice of paradise, but many a honeymooner has been met with rain instead of sunshine. Hawaii has a wet season and a lot of different microclimates that can play a part in the weather fluxes. Oahu, also called "The Gathering Place," has the most reliably clear and sunny weather of all the Hawaiian Islands.

Nice, France

It's nice. Really nice. A distant coastline neighbor of Málaga, this Mediterranean sea star is just as sunny. Walk or bike along the palm-peppered promenade des Anglais during a sunset and you'll think you're in California. The smell of French bread and wine will bring you right back, though.

Weather for January 11th, 2016 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

1/11/2016 (Permalink)

Community Weather for January 11th, 2016 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties Weather for January 11th, 2016 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Here is todays weather for today and the rest of the week. 

Tuesday and Wednesday we may see some snow but the remainder of the week should be clear! 

Enjoy! 

Weather for January 8th, 2016 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

1/8/2016 (Permalink)

Community Weather for January 8th, 2016 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties Weather for January 8th, 2016 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Todays weather in the Horseheads and the surrounding areas will be in the mid teens. 

Bundle up for the rest of today and tomorrow as we will be in the mid teens all day...Can there be some snow in the forecast, I guess we will see. 

First-Time Homeowners Can Get Ready For Extreme Cold by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

1/7/2016 (Permalink)

Storm Damage First-Time Homeowners Can Get Ready For Extreme Cold by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties First-Time Homeowners Can Get Ready For Extreme Cold by SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Winter is almost here, and the season may include extreme cold in your area. For first-time homeowners, preparing for a big freeze, an ice storm, or even a blizzard can require a little more than simply having a few shovels on hand. Check out these important tasks to do before Jack Frost arrives in your neighborhood.

Stock a Winter Emergency Kit

You might have an all-purpose supply kit in your home, but is it stocked with items specifically for extreme cold? In addition to the standard emergency supplies of food, water and medication for everyone in your household (including pets), Ready.gov suggests stocking supplies that include windshield scrapers, additional hats and gloves, and road salt and sand. In the event of a loss of power, the website also suggests using a battery-operated radio that receives broadcasts from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio All Hazards network to stay up to date on any developments in the forecast.

Inspect Your Furnace

There’s more to winterizing your home than cranking up the heat at the first sign of cold weather. The Insurance Information Institute (III) recommends servicing and repairing your furnace before cold weather reaches your area. In addition, EnergyStar.gov suggests scheduling a maintenance check of your furnace in the fall, before the cold weather arrives in force. The website also recommends checking your filter every month and replacing it if it’s dirty, with the filter replaced every three months at minimum. As noted by EnergryStar.gov, a dirty filter may impede a furnace from working efficiently.

Clear Outside Banisters, Stairs and Sidewalks

The outdoor features of your home may require some maintenance, too, especially if your area sees a significant amount of snow in addition to extreme freezing temperatures. Homeowners should repair or replace outside stairs, railings or banisters that could present a hazard in case of ice or snow, according to the III. You may need to clear your sidewalk of ice and snow, too, but don’t grab that shovel just yet. If you have a pre-existing medical condition, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), advises that you follow your doctor’s advice regarding strenuous work like shoveling, and to work slowly and dress warmly. The organization also advises dressing in layers and to keep your clothing dry while you work outdoors, as wet clothing in extreme cold weather can chill your body.

Weather for January 4th, 2016 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

1/4/2016 (Permalink)

Community Weather for January 4th, 2016 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties Weather for January 4th, 2016 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Todays weather in the Horseheads and the surrounding areas will be in the mid teens. 

Bundle up for the rest of today and tomorrow as we will be in the mid teens all day...plus some snow! 

Weather for December 30th, 2015 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

12/30/2015 (Permalink)

Community Weather for December 30th, 2015 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties Weather for December 30th, 2015 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Todays weather in Horseheads and the surrounding areas. Suppose to be in the high 30's.

Fog and rain possible all day! 

Weather for December 29th, 2015 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

12/29/2015 (Permalink)

Todays weather in Horseheads and the surrounding areas. Suppose to be in the high 30's. 

Severe weather advisory until 10am this morning freezing rain and drizzle turning to all rain in the afternoon.  

Ice Dam Signs and Prevention from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

12/28/2015 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Ice Dam Signs and Prevention from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties Ice Dam Signs and Prevention from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties
Perhaps you saw them around the holidays: whiteor blue outdoor lights that simulate trickling icicles. Or greeting cards that depict houses with large icicles hanging from the gutters. While the frosty stalactites may look pretty, they may actually be a signal of trouble in your own home. 

Are icicles a sign that something is amiss?

Icicles are commonly thought to be a sign of an ice dam on your roof, but are they? Possibly, says Rem Brown, senior engineering manager at the Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety (IBHS).

The three things necessary to form icicles – snow, heat to melt the snow, and cold weather – are also necessary to form ice dams, he explains. Ice dams form when warm air from inside your home melts snow on the roof. When the meltwater reaches the colder eaves (the part of the roof that extends beyond the walls), the water re-freezes and creates a build-up of ice along the edge of your roofline.

So, icicles hanging from the roof edge could be a sign of an ice dam (and larger icicles would likely indicate a larger ice dam, Brown says), but ice dams can even form without the presence of any large icicles.

The dangers of ice dams

The more snow and ice accumulate, and temperatures rise and fall, the larger the potential for ice dams. And ice dams can wreak havoc. They can damage and loosen shingles, rip off gutters and cause meltwater to pool and seep into your attic. Once that happens, insulation can get wet, paint can peel and the structure of your home can become damp. Untreated, this may cause rotting wood, damaged drywall and even mold growth.

How to remove snow to avoid an ice dam 

It’s best to remove snow from a heavy snowfall immediately to prevent the buildup of ice dams later. Though you might hear about people doing anything from using a snow blower to remove snow or an axe to chip away at an already-formed ice dam, both methods can damage your roof, IBHS warns.

A push broom with stiff bristles can be used to remove snow off flat and low-slope roofs, while a roof rake is the right option for sloped roofs, IBHS says, because you can remain on the ground and still remove snow. Of course, if you’re unable to easily reach the roof, or just unsure about your ability to do so, ask a roofing professional to do the job.

In the event that an ice dam does form, IBHS suggests keeping the attic well ventilated – the colder the attic, the less melting and refreezing on your roof, IBHS says.

How to permanently prevent ice dams

According to This Old House, the best way to prevent ice dams is to keep your roof and eaves the same temperature. Here’s how:

  • Add extra insulation in your attic floor to keep the warm air inside your home and out of the attic.
  • Relocate or remove heat sources (recessed lighting, for instance) in the attic directly under your roof.
  • Insulate attic access doors with a cover, or seal an existing hatch with weatherstripping.
  • Check the exhausts. Make sure all ducts from bathrooms, kitchens or other living areas exhaust to the outside, not the attic.
  • Check the flashing around the chimney. Over time, flashing can crack and separate from the roof, causing hot air to escape and allowing water to trickle in along the chimney. Have your chimney sweep check the flashing and, if necessary, repair or replace it.

Preventive steps like these can help preserve the health of your home by eliminating ice dams – and maybe even those icicles!

If these ideas do not work, call SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties at 607-846-3685 and will be there to help. 

Weather for December 28th, 2015 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

12/28/2015 (Permalink)

Community Weather for December 28th, 2015 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties Weather for December 28th, 2015 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Todays weather in Horseheads and the surrounding areas. Suppose to be in the mid 20's.

Winter weather advisory from 6pm today until 10am Wednesday including feezing rain and sleet with a mix of snow. Roads will be dangerous, please be careful. 

Weather for December 24th, 2015 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

12/24/2015 (Permalink)

Community Weather for December 24th, 2015 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties Weather for December 24th, 2015 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Todays weather in Horseheads and the surrounding areas. Suppose to be in the mid 60's with sporadic rain showers.

Thoughts and prayers to all the people down South dealing with the most recent tornado...stay safe! 

MERRY CHRISTMAS from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

12/23/2015 (Permalink)

Community MERRY CHRISTMAS from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties MERRY CHRISTMAS from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Hello friends, it is that time of the year again. A time to step back and look at another year that has gone by way to quickly! All the times that tested you and challenged you. All the times that made you proud of yourself, your team, and your company. All of those times that define who you are as an individual, family and team member.  We here at SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties certainly had those moments, whether it was the freezing winter nights that caused damage or the horrible floods that came upon us way too fast we definitely were tested.

In the coming year there are so many opportunities to look forward to, and if this past year was any indication, there will be a handful of challenges as well. We know that that each of us will be working hard to meet those challenges and setting new goals for the future.

At this time of Christmas let us all be thankful for what Christmas means to each of us. For us it means the life of Christ and the gifts of salvation, eternal life and grace.

So from my family to yours have a safe holiday season and MERRY CHRISTMAS to you all!

Brian Laing & The SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Family

Weather for December 23rd, 2015 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

12/23/2015 (Permalink)

Community Weather for December 23rd, 2015 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties Weather for December 23rd, 2015 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Todays weather in Horseheads and the surrounding areas. Suppose to be in the high 50's/low 60's with rain in the afternoon. 

Weather for December 22st, 2015 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

12/22/2015 (Permalink)

Community Weather for December 22st, 2015 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties Weather for December 22st, 2015 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Todays weather in Horseheads and the surrounding areas. Rain until 3pm with a little bit of sun reaching through the clouds! 

Weather for December 21st, 2015 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

12/21/2015 (Permalink)

Community Weather for December 21st, 2015 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties Weather for December 21st, 2015 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Todays weather in Horseheads and the surrounding areas. Suppose to be sunny and nice! No snow until after Christmas...

5 Holiday Safety Tips For Your Home from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

12/21/2015 (Permalink)

General 5 Holiday Safety Tips For Your Home from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties 5 Holiday Safety Tips For Your Home from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties
It’s that time of year again! Already the stores are jammed from one end to the other with holiday decorations, trinkets, treats and toys. I know I get wrapped up in the excitement just like everyone else. But while we’re sipping our cider and hanging the wreath, there are hazards lurking in your old decoration box in the attic. This is the perfect time of year to do a few safety checks so that the rest of your holidays are safe and stress free.

Follow these five tips for holiday safety:

1) Inspect those lights! A frayed wire is a recipe for disaster, especially if it’s wound around a drying up tree. Carefully inspect all holiday lights before you hang them to ensure they aren’t going to pose a fire hazard. There is nothing less jolly than a Christmas tree set ablaze.

2) Keep lights and wires away from young children and pets. Holiday lights can often contain PVC coatings and be tainted with lead. You wouldn’t want your little ones to be handling them and then sticking their hands in their mouth. This is an unexpected source of lead exposure that is easy to avoid. After you are done with your decorating, wash your hands thoroughly.

3) Replace lights with safer alternatives. The thing to look for when purchasing lights is a label that says RoHS (Reduction of Hazardous Substances) which means that no lead is used in making the lights. Some companies don’t have this label but will confirm their lead status if you ask. EnvironmentalLights.com carries a variety of LED holiday lights that are free of lead.

4) Be aware of toy recalls. It’s easy to pile the toys into your cart without a thought. But what happens if the scooter you bought for Billy has been recalled for a laceration hazard and you don’t know it? Investigating toy recalls is a worthy time investment when buying new or used toys for kids. You can subscribe to the Consumer Product Safety Commissions email list and you’ll get a digest that includes the weekly recalls of current toys. This way you’ll be alerted if something you bought pops up. You can also search SaferProducts.gov for toys and other items to see if anything you already have has been recalled in the past. It might just be a simple repair kit or it could be something more dangerous like lead paint. It’s worth it to check!

5) Check and replace smoke and carbon monoxide detection device batteries. This is the perfect time to test and check all your safety devices in your home. Replace batteries in your smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors during the holidays. It will keep you and your family safer and it will be easy to remember when you last replaced them.

Now that you have those holiday safety tips out of the way, you can refill your cider and put your feet up for a relaxing Holiday Season!

Call SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties 24/7

Weather for December 18th, 2015 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

12/18/2015 (Permalink)

Community Weather for December 18th, 2015 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties Weather for December 18th, 2015 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Todays weather in Horseheads and the surrounding areas. A little bit of rain, mixed with snow and cold...could the weather be changing! 

Weather for December 17th, 2015 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

12/17/2015 (Permalink)

Community Weather for December 17th, 2015 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties Weather for December 17th, 2015 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Todays weather in Horseheads and the surrounding areas. Its a little gloomy out there! 

Weather for December 14th, 2015 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

12/14/2015 (Permalink)

Community Weather for December 14th, 2015 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties Weather for December 14th, 2015 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Todays weather in Horseheads and the surrounding areas. Enjoy the warm weather while we can!

Weather for December 11th, 2015 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

12/11/2015 (Permalink)

Community Weather for December 11th, 2015 from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties Weather in Horseheads New York from SERVPRO of Chemung & Schuyler Counties

Todays weather in Horseheads and the surrounding areas. Enjoy this beautiful weather! 

Categories

Archived Posts